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Korea ranks number one in elderly suicide rate

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작성자 김시은 작성일16-01-27 23:30 조회1,003회 댓글0건


Do you know that about 37.9 Koreans commit suicide every day? In 2015, Korea ranked number one in suicide rate out of all OECD nations. Many people think teenager suicide is the major reason why Korea has such a high suicide rate. However, unlike this common perception, Korean teenager suicide rate is about average. What’s really serious is elderly suicide rate. Over the past 10 years, South Korea has ranked number one in elderly suicide rate. 116. 2 out of 100,000 Korean elderlies committed suicides per year. This number is 20 times bigger than the OECD average. Then what are the major causes?


Firstly, Korea’s high elderly suicide rate can be attributed to financial hardship. Half of South Korea’s elderlies are in relative poverty, according to the OECD. This ranks the country’s seniors as the most destitute among its rich-country members. Without money, Korean elderlies cannot maintain a stable life. They don’t have a home to keep them warm in winter and nutritious food to keep them healthy. Even worse, when they get a serious disease, there is no way to get a surgery to cure the disease. Likewise, financial instability drops the quality of life and deprives elderlies of happiness and hope. The main reason why more than half of Korea’s elderlies are poor is because they don’t have a job. Korean society’s employment rate for retirees is very low placing them in poverty. Therefore, to help Korean elderlies financially, Korean government must change the labor market’s structure and offer jobs to old people. In addition, they should give enough subsidies for all poor elderlies without demanding difficult qualifications.


Second major reason why so many elderlies choose to die is because they suffer extreme loneliness. According to one research an estimated 74 percent of poverty-stricken elderly Koreans lived alone. This is due to Korean’s change in perception towards old parents. Only a third of South Koreans think that children should support their ageing parents according to statistics. Likewise, most Korean elderlies are abandoned by their own children and are forced to live alone. They are also isolated from the society since Korean society neither shows attention nor affection towards old people. Loneliness causes depression, ultimately leading to suicides. In order to improve elderlies’ loneliness Korean society must show great care and support. Also, children should be responsible for their parents until their death. It’s unethical to abandon parents who raised them with love.


Korean elderlies are desperate for help. They suffer poverty, isolation, loneliness and depression. However, Korean society is not giving any help but neglecting the problem. There must be a change in Korean society’s attitude towards elderlies. We must treat them with respect, care, love and support. Otherwise, more elderlies’ lives will be taken away. I hope less elderlies commit suicides and more elderlies feel happy. 

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