Senators Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) today offered a resolution to promote Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, recognized each year in September. The resolution was cosponsored by Senators Mazie Hirono (D-HI), John Boozman (R-AR), Mark Begich (D-AK), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) and Jon Tester (D-MT).
Donnelly said, "This month is an opportunity for us to recognize and discuss suicide prevention. I introduced this resolution because we need to be vigilant in ensuring that those at risk for suicide are receiving the help they need, and are comfortable asking for it. We can work to combat suicide by educating ourselves on warning signs and risk factors and spreading the word about confidential and free resources available."
Isakson said, "I am honored to join Sen. Donnelly in introducing this resolution in observance of Suicide Awareness Month to raise awareness for this important issue and to recognize that we should do all that we can to support individuals who are at risk. As a member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, I have taken a particular interest in working to reverse the alarming figure that 22 veterans commit suicide each day in our country. It is imperative that our servicemembers receive the help they need when they need it the most."
- 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.