U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, sponsored a Senate resolution promoting Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, recognized each year in September. The resolution was introduced by Sens. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), and unanimously passed the Senate last night. It supports the goals and efforts of National Suicide Prevention Month and encourages Americans to learn more about suicide's warning signs in order to help prevent suicide and promote mental health.
"This month is an opportunity to raise awareness and promote discussion of the vital issue of suicide prevention among our military force and veterans," Sen. Moran said. "We should do everything in our power to support individuals who are at risk and suffering. As a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, I am committed to working to reverse the alarming statistic that 22 veterans commit suicide each day in our country. We must make certain veterans struggling from the ails of war have the help they deserve."
Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States and the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 34.
In total, it is estimated that close to six million Americans have lost a loved one to suicide.
Servicemembers and veterans of our military are uniquely vulnerable. In 2012 alone, approximately 349 members of the United States Military (active duty, Guard, and Reserve) committed suicide, which is more than the total number of servicemembers who died in combat operations. This number does not include the more than 6,000 veterans who committed suicide in 2012.
The Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached for free, confidential support at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). The Military and Veterans Crisis Line can be reached for free, confidential support at 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1.