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Parliamentary questions
11 July 2012
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 117
Konstantinos Poupakis (PPE)

 Subject: Dramatic rise in the suicide rate in Greece

Until 2008 Greece had one of the lowest suicide rates in the world, with 2.8 suicides per 100 000 inhabitants. With the eruption of financial crisis and its transformation into an acute social and humanitarian crisis, there has been a continuous and rapid increase in the number of suicides, which in recent months have become a painful and virtually daily occurrence, shocking Greek society. Both suicides and suicide attempts are, in the overwhelming majority of cases, a reflection of increasing desperation and despair due to the extremely adverse socioeconomic conditions experienced by Greek citizens. The lack of work and household over-indebtedness, the reduction in disposable income, and the poverty — particularly in its extreme forms, e.g. homelessness and material deprivation — that threatens more and more of our citizens have a significant psychological impact that leads to suicide. In this context and in response to the Commission's previous answer on the direct connection between the unemployment rate and the suicide rate, will the Commission say:

Does it have any recent statistics on variations in the suicide rate in the Member States?
Does it have any evidence of changes in the ‘profile of the person who commits suicide’ during the economic crisis?
Will it take key actions to raise public awareness about suicide prevention, given the increase in unemployment which aggravates the risk of a proliferation of cases of suicide?
Will it promote exchanges of best practices to identify the most appropriate ways of addressing this very painful social phenomenon?
Are there any funds available from the European Structural Funds for the psycho-social support of persons who are disadvantaged socially and economically (e.g. the unemployed)?
Are there any statistics for take-up rates of the Member States in respect of psycho-social support programmes and unused funds that may be used for actions of this kind?

Original language of question: ELOJ C 219 E, 31/07/2013
Last updated: 23 July 2012Legal notice