Department of Defense Stepping in to Tackle Tragic Issue Plaguing Military

Department of Defense Stepping in to Tackle Tragic Issue Plaguing Military

(AbsoluteNews.com) – The suicide rate among military members and veterans has been a concern for quite some time. At least 30,000 have lost their lives as a result of suicide since 2001. Now the Defense Department (DOD) is stepping in to try to tackle the problem.

On September 30, the DOD released the annual suicide report for 2020. It found 580 active-duty, reserves and National Guard troops ended their own lives last year. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin called the report “troubling,” saying the “trends are not going in the right direction.” DOD Spokesman John Kirby told the press the department is going to “redouble” its efforts to provide all military members with “the care and resources they need to reduce stigmas and barriers” to mental health care.

The department found the suicide rate among active-duty members rose by 41% from 2015 to 2020. Last year, the rate increased by 9.1% over the year before. Among reserve military members, suicides increased 19.2% in 2020. However, the study found it had gone down overall since 2018.

The DOD will work with the Department of Veterans Affairs to try to get a handle on the epidemic of suicides.

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