Although a growing body of literature has indicated that unemployment has a positive association with suicide, the dynamic aspects of unstable employment have not yet been considered in suicidology. This study explored the association between employment stability and completed suicide among people aged 25–34 years in 20 OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries with time-series data (1994–2010). In order to consider the different aspects of unstable employment, we tested the impacts of employment protection legislation indicators as another proxy of job insecurity (employed, but unstable) apart from unemployment rates. Covariates, including economic growth rates, GDP per capita, fertility rates, and divorce rate, were controlled for. The analysis was designed to be gender- and age-specific, where observations with ages of 25–29 were separated from those with ages of 30–34. Random effect models were applied to examine changes over time in suicide rates, and other models were presented to check robustness. The results showed that it is a low level of employment protection, rather than unemployment itself, that was associated with increased suicide rates among all of the studied populations. The magnitude of the effect differed by gender.
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