Teacher suicide in Guangdong sheds light again on workplace stress

Posted: 03/18/2013 4:00 pm

A sad story has emerged out of the Guangdong city of Zhanjiang that puts the spotlight once again on stress and mental health.

On March 2, a 32-year-old male teacher in Leizhou, Zhanjiang committed suicide in his dormitory. His family suspects his death was caused by an excessive amount of workplace pressure. His school principal told to the media that many people are struggling under high pressure these days, adding the teacher also suffered from depression and was an introvert, according to media reports.

This teacher, who was not named in media reports, was a senior high math teacher in Leizhou Number 1 Middle School. He graduated from Hubei and took part in an open recruitment in Leizhou before being hired in 2005.

He was found with a wire around his neck and his body dangling from the iron railing in his dorm. A note said “I would rather die than get anyone else involved.” The police have ruled the death a suicide.

Journalists visited the teacher’s family and learned from his younger brother that he got divorced last May. The teacher apparently had also complained to his family about the working pressure and low pay in Leizhou.

The school responded to media enquiries by saying everyone in society is under pressure, which is what is needed to excel.

There’s no doubt that as China modernizes and pressure increases, suicide has become the way out for some. One expects more such cases before the spotlight is truly turned to the importance of mental health.


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