Suicide rates increased dramatically among the U.S. working population between 2000 and 2016, with male construction workers and miners having the highest suicide rates by occupation in recent years, According to a new federal analysis of labor data.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), identifying suicide trends in labor data could help authorities better understand suicide among different occupational groups and inform suicide prevention efforts.
The study looked at 22,000 U.S. workers ages 16 to 64 years who died by suicide in 17 states. The data showed that construction workers and miners had the highest rate of suicide among the male working population.
Suicide rates among female workers were significantly lower than among male workers overall, but most female suicides occurred in the arts, design, entertainment, sports and media occupational group.
The second-highest rate of suicide among female workers was found in the food preparation and serving group, the CDC said.
The CDC identified that the lowest rate of suicide among both males and females was observed in the education, training, and library occupations.
The study was based on data from the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS), a national surveillance system launched in 2002 that pulls together data on violent deaths in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
Sources of the anonymous data include state and local medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement agencies, toxicologists, and vital statistics records. According to the CDC, the NVDRS provides states and communities with a clearer picture of violent deaths that can inform health care professionals and lawmakers on policies and other efforts to prevent violence and track progress over time.