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Suicide Rates
American Indian / First Nations
United States / Canada

Demographic Information


Racial demographics of the United States: 2000 Census. Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racial_demographics_of_the_United_States. "The indigenous peoples in the United States, such as American Indians and Inuit, make up about 1.5% of the population."

Demographics of the United States: 2000 Census. Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_the_United_States. "American Indian 1% or 2.9 million, which includes those of mixed race or more than one race in addition to Native Americans."

Demographics of Canada. Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_canada. Census 2001: First Nations People =  3.38%. Metis = 1.04%.

Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aboriginal_peoples_in_Canada. "The term "First Peoples" has also been used synonymously, and is occasionally used as a descriptive term by U.S. Native Americans in solidarity with their Canadian relatives. As of the 2001 Canadian Census there are over 900,000 Aboriginal people in Canada. This includes approximately 600,000 people of First Nations descent, 290,000 Métis, and 45,000 Inuit."

Hodgkinson, H.L. (1990). The Demographics of American Indians: One Percent of the People; Fifty Percent of the Diversity. Washington, D.C.: Institute for Educational Leadership. Abstract: http://www.eric.ed.gov/sitemap/html_0900000b8004c374.html - "This publication draws on census figures and various other sources to pull together the available demographic data on American Indians and Alaska Natives. According to census figures, in the United States in 1988 there were l.7 million Native Americans belonging to about 500 tribes and native groups and speaking about 200 languages, but only 308 groups have a relationship with the federal government."

Native Languages of the Americas: List of Native American Indian Tribes and Languages. Internet: http://www.native-languages.org/languages.htm


Recent Suicide Related Documents


Statement by Robert G. McSwain, Director, Indian Health Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services... on Youth Suicide in Indian Country... before Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, United States Senate. Thursday, February 26, 2009 (Full Text). Document Referred to:  Trends in Indian Health, 2002-2003 (2009, PDF). "Suicide is the second leading cause of death behind unintentional injuries for Indian youth ages 15-24 residing in IHS service areas and is 3.5 times higher than the national average." Note: Overall production of Trends in Indian Health was managed by the Division of Program Statistics (DPS), Office of Public Health Support (OPHS), Indian Health Service (IHS) under the direction of Edna L. Paisano, Director.

Dorgan, Byron L: Senator, D-ND (2010). The Tragedy of Native American Youth Suicide. Psychological Services, 7(3): 213-218. PDF Download. - Dorgan hosts sumit to build partnerships that will aid Indian youth suicide prevention efforts (2010): Discussion will address urgent crisis in Indian communities, which have the highest suicide rates in the U.S.

The Working Group For A Suicide Prevention Strategy For Nunavut (2009). Qaujijausimajuni Tunngaviqarniq: Using knowledge and experience as a foundation for action A discussion paper on suicide prevention in Nunavut. PDF Download. ":Sexual orientation: Discrimination/intimidation/threats because of sexual orientation. Stress as a result of questioning one’s sexual orientation".

Halpern P (2009). An American Indian/Alaska Native Suicide Prevention Hotline: Literature Review and Discussion with Experts. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. Full Text.
PDF Download.

Alcántara C, Gone JP (2007). Reviewing suicide in Native American communities: situating risk and protective factors within a transactional-ecological framework. Death Studies, 31(5): 457-77. Abstract. PDF Download.

"American Indian and Alaska Native Suicide Prevention" Website

"Honouring Life Network," Canada: Aboriginal Youth Suicide


"Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention," USA



United States
American Indian Youth:
2-2.5 Times More likely to Commit Suicide


American Male Adolescent Suicide
Native American / White
-
1990-1998
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
1999-2003
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
Age
Group
Native
American
White
RR
Native
American
White
RR
10-14
4.86
2.59
1.9
3.57
2.10
1.7
15-19
38.65
18.26
2.1
31.44 14.49 2.2
10-19*
22.16
10.61
2.1
17.43 8.26 2.1
Data Generated by Author at: http://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html
RR = Risk Ratio: Risk for Suicide by Native American Males Compared to White males.
Native American Males (Non-Hispanic) Have Been Two Times More at Risk for Suicide
Than Their Non-Hispanic White Counterparts.  *Age Adjusted


American Male Youth Suicide: Native American / White
-
1990-1998
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
1999-2003
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
Age
Group
Native
American
White
RR
Native
American
White
RR
15-19
38.65
18.26
2.1
31.44 14.49 2.2
20-25
51.60
27.51
1.9
37.73
24.18
1.6
15-25
45.35
23.04
2.0
34.46
19.14
1.8
Data Generated by Author at: http://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html
RR = Risk Ratio: Risk for Suicide by Native American Males Compared to White males.
Native American Males (Non-Hispanic) Have Been Two Times More at Risk for Suicide
Than Their Non-Hispanic White Counterparts.  *Age Adjusted


American Female Adolescent Suicide
Native American / White
-
1990-1998
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
1999-2003
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
Age
Group
Native
American
White
RR
Native
American
White
RR
10-14
1.66
0.91
1.8
1.58
0.58
2.7
15-19
9.16
3.70
2.5
8.63 2.92 2.9
10-19*
5.50
2.34
2.3
5.09 1.75 2.9
Data Generated by Author at: http://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html
RR = Risk Ratio: Risk for Suicide by Native American Females Compared to White Females.
Native American Females (Non-Hispanic) Have Been Two to Three Times More at Risk for
Suicide Than Their Non-Hispanic White Counterparts. *Age Adjusted

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (producer). Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS) [Online] (2004). Available online at: http://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars/index.html.


American Female Youth Suicide: Native American / White
-
1990-1998
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
1999-2003
Suicide Deaths / 100,000
Age
Group
Native
American
White
RR
Native
American
White
RR
15-19
9.16
3.70
2.5
8.63 2.92 2.9
20-24
9.11
4.29
2.1
8.16
3.76
2.2
15-24*
9.14
4.01
2.3
8.41
3.32
2.5
Data Generated by Author at: http://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html
RR = Risk Ratio: Risk for Suicide by Native American Females Compared to White Females.
Native American Females (Non-Hispanic) Have Been Two to Three Times More at Risk for
Suicide Than Their Non-Hispanic White Counterparts. *Age Adjusted


American Indian Youth
Suicide Rates Vary by Regions



*Suicides Among American Indians/Alaska Natives Aged <19 Years, by Indian Health Service (IHS) Administrative Areas: 1989–1998
American Indian Adolescent Suicide Rates Vary by Region: 1989-1998
Source: MMWR (2003)



Canada
First Nations Youth
5-6 Times More Likely to Commit Suicide

Crude Suicide Death Rate by Age Group
First Nations and Canadian Population: 1989-1993

Youth Suicide Rates - Canada - Aboriginal, Others: male, Female, All Ages
Source: Community Health Programs Directorate, First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (2001), Citing: Health Canada (1996), using Health Canada in-house statistics.




Suicide Rates by Age and Gender
First Nations & All Canadians: 1990 - 1994

Canadian Suicide Rates: All, Aboriginal, Ages 10 to 75 Years
Source: SIEC (2003)

Note: The "All Males"and "All Females" graphed line contain "First Nations". Given that Aboriginal youth (4% of the youth population) account for about 23% of youth suicides in Canada, the part of the graphed line for "All non-Aboriginal male youth (Ages = 15-30), for example, would be about 25% lower that the graphed "All Males" line in this age range. Aboriginal male youth are five to six times more at risk of suicide than their non-Aboriginal counterparts. The same, or greater risk, applies for Aboriginal female youth.


British Columbia
First Nations Youth Suicide Statistics


Suicide Rate in British Columbia: 1987-1992
youth-suicide-rates-aboriginal-non-aboriginal-british-columbia-1987-93
Source: Chandler & Lalonde (1998): Figure 1. Youth Age = 15-24 years



Aboriginal Youth Suicide Rate: 1987 - 2000
By Band - British Columbia
Youth Suicide Rate By Aboriginal Bands
Youth = Ages 15 to 24 Years. Source: Chandler (2005)


Aboriginal Youth Suicide Rate: 1987 - 2000
By Tribal Council - British Columbia
Youth Suicide Rate by Tribal Council: British Columbia, 1987-2000
Youth = Ages 15 to 24 Years. Source: Chandler (2005)


Aboriginal Youth Suicide Rate: 1987 - 1992
By Tribal Council - British Columbia
Youth Suicide Rate by Tribal Council: British Columbia, 1987-1992
Source: Chandler & Lalonde (1998): Figure 3. Youth Age = 15-24 years
29 Councils, 6 With No Youth Deaths From Suicide

Bibliography

Chandler MJ (2005). Suicide & The Persistence Of Identity In The Face Of Radical Cultural Change. Presented at the Assembly of First Nations National Policy Forum, 19 April 2005. Internet: http://www.cmha.ca/data/1/rec_docs/1354_Suicide%20&%20The%20Persistence%20of%20Identity%20in%20the%20Face%20of%20Radical%20Cultural%20Change.pdf. - http://www.afn.ca/cmslib/general/Michael-Chandler.pps.

Chandler MJ, Lalonde CE (+2006). Transferring Whose Knowledge? Exchanging Whose Best Practices?: On Knowing About Indigenous Knowledge and Aboriginal Suicide. To appear in: D. Beavan & J. White (Eds.). Aboriginal Policy Research. London, ON: Althouse Press. Internet: http://web.uvic.ca/~lalonde/manuscripts/2003INAC.pdf .

Chandler, MJ, Lalonde, CE (1998)
. Cultural Continuity as a hedge against suicide in Canada's First Nations. Transcultural Psychiatry, 35(2): 193-211. Internet: http://www.turtleisland.org/front/s6.pdf - http://www.turtleisland.org/front/chandler.htm .

Community Health Programs Directorate, First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (2001). Unintentional and Intentional Injury Profile for Aboriginal People in Canada 1990-1999. Health Canada, Ottawa. Internet: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fniah-spnia/pubs/promotion/_injury-bless/2001_trauma/index-eng.php - http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fniah-spnia/alt_formats/fnihb-dgspni/pdf/pubs/injury-bless/2001_trauma-eng.pdf .

Health Canada (1996). Trends in First Nations Mortality 1979-1993. Ottawa: Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada.

MMWR (2003). Injury Mortality Among American Indian and Alaska Native Children and Youth - United States, 1989–1998. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 52(30): 697-701. Internet: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5230a2.htm.

SIEC (2003). Alert 52:  Suicide Among Canada's Aboriginal People. Suicide Information and Education Centre. Calgary, Alberta. Internet: http://www.suicideinfo.ca/csp/assets/Alert52.pdf. Alternate Link. For more detailed information about Canadian Aboriginal suicide see: Kirmayer LJ, et al. (2007). Suicide Among Aboriginal People in Canada. The Aboriginal Healing Foundation Research Series. Ottawa, ON: Aboriginal Healing Foundation. PDF Download.



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