More income, fewer suicides?

May 1, 2019—If money can’t buy you love, it may be able to buy some peace of mind. A recent study by a team of researchers at the University of California–Berkeley shows that a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage and the Earned Income Tax Credit (available to low-wage workers) corresponds with a large drop in non-drug related suicides among people without college degrees.

It’s not the first study to suggestion a connection between minimum wages and suicides, but it is the first to assert a cause-and-effect relationship. So-called “deaths of despair” have risen dramatically since 2000, especially among the white working class. Young women are particularly likely to have minimum-wage jobs, and benefited the most from a hike in their standard of living—indeed they were the most likely to go on living.

Image: Washington Post

Source: Andrew Van Dam, “Researchers Say There’s a Simply Way to Reduce Suicides: Increase the Minimum Wage,” Washington Post, April 30, 2019