December 20, 2016 8:53 pm
Updated: December 21, 2016 8:15 am

Saskatchewan-specific survey finds students bullied, considered suicide

WATCH ABOVE: In Canada, Saskatchewan is at or the near the top of the list when it comes to certain statistics including impaired driving, crime rates and teen pregnancies. Last year, a coalition of Saskatchewan organizations took it upon themselves to gather their own statistics on the overall health of youth in the province. For more on what they found, here’s Blake Lough.

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A recently-published report looking into the well-being of Saskatchewan’s youth reveals that almost 65 per cent of students experienced at least one type of bullying at least once in the past year.

Nearly one in five students have also considered suicide.

The findings come from the Saskatchewan Alliance for Youth and Community Well-Being (SAYCW) – a partnership of health and community groups – who surveyed 8,832 students in 114 schools on a variety of health-related topics in 2015.

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Inspired by national surveys that consistently ranked Saskatchewan at or near the top of negative health-related stats, SAYCW conducted their own extensive survey “to identify gaps in existing youth health surveys and other available local health data.”

What they found, though, was largely consistent with national reports.

“We’re seeing that what’s in our report is actually lining up with other things that have been recently published,” SAYCW co-chair Jon Tonita.

Some of the report’s findings include:

  • 12% of male and 32% of female students had harmed themselves
  • Nearly 1 in 5 students had considered suicide in the past year
  • 50% of those who considered it had also attempted suicide
  • 21% of students had participated in heavy drinking
  • 22% of students had tried drugs
  • 43% of students reported being sexually active, 32% of which rarely or never used a condom
  • 31% of females and 14% of males who were sexually active had experienced sexual assault

While the provincial report was just released, SAYCW has provided every school that participated in the survey with its own individual report. The organization hopes more reports on a three-year cycle will help track “potential areas for action.”

“The real goal was: local data at the school/community level where activity can take place, where they can action on the results,” Tonita said.

The full report can be viewed here:

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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