Congressman Jon Runyan (R-NJ) released the following statement regarding the passage of H.R. 5854, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 2013 (MilCon/VA). This legislation included funding for suicide prevention programs for veterans of the United States Armed Forces.
"The men and women who are serving in the military are facing a dramatic increase in the prevalence of traumatic brain injuries. These injuries, along with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other mental and emotional disorders, could be playing a key role in the increases we are seeing in the number of soldiers taking their own lives. This increase in suicides is unacceptable, and that is why I joined my New Jersey colleague, Congressman Rush Holt, in making sure that MilCon/VA included adequate levels of funding for suicide prevention programs. It is my sincere hope that the funds provided in this bill will help our service members adjust to a healthy post-deployment life for themselves and their families."