Suicide is a serious concern in military communities. Service members and their families deal with a great number of stressors such as social connection and isolation, health and well-being, homelessness and most recently, COVID-19 pandemic to name a few. Did you know that in 2018, U.S. Veterans accounted for 14% of all American adult suicides?
Military suicides have taken a troubling rise in 2020, according to an Associated Press report, hitting the Army especially hard, as top defense officials believe coronavirus restrictions may be taking a serious mental health toll among members of the U.S. Armed Forces.
With the large number of Armed Forces veterans within our Virginia SMP family, we want to provide you, your loved ones and friends with the following information and to let you know that you are not alone.
The Veterans Administration (VA) provides free and confidential support via the Veterans Crisis Line/Military Crisis Line. Veterans in crisis and their loved ones can connect with a caring VA Responder by phone, text or on-line chat. VA Responders are qualified to deal with any immediate crisis. Veterans Crisis Line/Military Crisis Line support is also available to Service members of the National Guard and Reserve, and all Veterans, even if they are not registered with the VA or enrolled in VA health care.
By recognizing the warning signs, you can help reduce the risk of suicide.