While a lot of New Jerseyans seem to be angry, I can’t say that I’ve found many of them to be depressed.

Well, according to 24/7 Wall St., there is one city in New Jersey that stands out as being the most depressed in the state. That city: Passaic.

How did they measure this? They looked at a number of factors, including unemployment rate, poverty rate, median household income, access to healthcare, life expectancy, crime rate, and access to parks and recreation.

depressed man on bed with hand on head at bedroom

What makes Passaic so sad?

⚫ High poverty rate (32.9% vs. the statewide average of 14%)

⚫ Low median household income (Passaic’s income level $31,771 is less than half of the statewide median income)

⚫ Poor access to healthcare; many residents don’t have health insurance and there is a shortage of doctors

⚫ Low life expectancy; Passaic’s life expectancy of 72.3 is lower than the statewide number of 78.6%

⚫ High crime rate; higher than the statewide rate, causing fear and insecurity, both drivers of depression

⚫ Limited access to parks and recreation; this limits residents' opportunities for exercise and fresh air

⚫ Lack of social support; Passaic contends with a high rate of social isolation, a known risk factor for depression, stemming from the city’s high crime rate, poverty rate, and limited access to transportation.

Teenage girl looking thoughtful about troubles
Jochen Sch?nfeld

While Passaic isn’t one of New Jersey’s largest cities, it does have a population of over 70,000, making the preceding information somewhat alarming.

The state of New Jersey has a page with mental health resources; find it at https://nj.gov/humanservices/dmhas/resources/mental/

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Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle only.

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