Sunday, December 23, 2007

Good news, except in some newsrooms

This Blog will be taking the holidays off. The post about Kansas, and how that state is compromising the integrity of an entire national database of foster care statistics will appear when the Blog resumes on January 2. (In the meantime, I’ve updated NCCPR’s Press Release on the issue).

But before pausing for the holidays, one note about a holiday tradition: the story about coping with holiday depression – you know, the story that talks about how suicides increase during the holiday season.

Except they don’t.

The Los Angeles Times reports on a review of 32 studies of the link between the holiday season and suicides. Here’s the link: Suicides go down, perhaps by as much as 40 percent.

What does this have to do with child welfare? Only this. Like so many “facts” and statistics that appear in stories about child abuse and foster care, the claim that the holiday season leads to more suicide was “too good to check.”