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Suicide Life Threat Behav. 1985 Spring;15(1):14-26.

Comparison of suicides among Anglos and Hispanics in five southwestern states.


Little is known about deaths resulting from self-inflicted violent behavior for Hispanic Americans. To learn more about suicide for Hispanics of Mexican origin (Mexican Americans) we focused on the five southwestern states (Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas) in which more than 60% of all Hispanics in the United States reside (86% of whom are Mexican American). We obtained data on the number of suicide deaths in the white population, with Hispanics and Anglos (white, non-Hispanic) identified separately. Suicides of Anglos were used as a comparison group. Results show that the suicide rate for whites in the five southwestern states (15.6) was almost one-fourth higher than the rate for whites nationally (12.7). Suicide rates for the two ethnic groups, however, showed the rate for Hispanics (9.0) to be less than the national rates for whites (12.7) and one-half that of Anglos residing in the same area (17.3). The lower suicide rate for Hispanics relative to Anglos is seen for both males and females. The ratio of male and female suicides for Hispanics was almost twice that for Anglos (4.0 to 1 for Hispanics and 2.3 to 1 for Anglos). More than 1 in 3 Hispanic men who committed suicide and more than 1 in 4 Hispanic women who committed suicide are under the age of 25.

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