As per the findings of a new research by UNICEF, Ireland has the fourth highest teen suicide rate in the EU/OECD region.
The organisation’s latest Report – “Building the Future: Children and the Sustainable Development Goals in Rich Countries”, that analyses the status of children in 41 high-income countries in relation to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) identified as most important for child well-being, finds that Ireland has an above average international suicide rate of 10.3 per 100,000 population in the 15-19 age group between 2008 and 2013. The rate is considerably low in southern European countries with portugal at the lowest rate of 1.7 per 100,000. The report ranks countries based on their performance against the SDGs, and details the challenges and opportunities they face in achieving global commitments to children.
The report also claims that 22.6% of children aged 11-15 report experiencing two or more psychological symptoms more than once a week, which also shows that teenagers themselves are concerned about their mental health.
The findings of the report also mentioned that 23% children in Ireland are living in multidimensional poverty, 18.3% in relative income poverty and 9.1% of 15-19 year olds are not in education, work or training. However, on the brighter side, number of teens reporting being drunk in Ireland in the past month has gone down to 4.8%. The rate more than halved and the report made note of the “dramatic improvement” between 2010 and 2014.
Unicef Ireland chief executive, Peter Power said that the report card serves as a “wake-up call” for Ireland. “Despite economic recovery and the idea that the consequent rising tide will benefit everyone, it is clear children are experiencing real and substantial inequality. Services are inadequate in several areas and policy change is badly needed,” he added.