7 Ways to Support Veteran Suicide Prevention Efforts

Although the suicide rate among veterans is actually lower than that of the general population, it is still an epidemic that needs to be addressed. Sadly, in 2017, the suicide rate among veterans hit an all-time high, with around 20 a day. Unfortunately, this number continues to increase. That’s why organizations like We Got Your 6 work tirelessly to raise awareness and support programs that help prevent further tragedies.

Suicide rate among veterans

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, veterans are more likely to die by suicide than non-veterans.

There are several reasons veterans may be at higher risk for suicide. First, veterans often struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental health issues that can lead to suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Veterans may also have access to firearms and other lethal means, increasing their risk of suicide.

The latest statistics show that the suicide rate among veterans has increased in recent years. In 2022, the suicide rate among veterans was 21.0 per 100,000, up from 18.0 in 2020. This increase is concerning and underscores the need to strengthen efforts to prevent suicide among veterans.

If you’re also committed to helping veterans in your community, here are six ways to support their efforts:

#1. Talk about the problem

It’s easy to assume that the people around you who are experiencing the symptoms of PTSD know about the resources available to them. In reality, this is often not the case. You can open the door to a conversation by simply asking someone if they’ve heard the latest statistics on veteran suicide. You might be surprised by their lack of awareness. By bringing the issue to light in a non-confrontational way, you may be able to help a veteran in your life get the help they need.

#2. Donate your time or your money

Assignment 22

Veterans in crisis often have difficulty getting help because they don’t know where to turn. Organizations like Mission 22 provide a centralized platform for veterans and their family members to find the information and support they need. Your donation can help support these and other efforts to help veterans in crisis.

#3. Be there to listen when veterans need someone to talk to

One of the most important ways to support veterans in your community is to be there for them when they need someone to talk to. You don’t have to be a trained professional to help a veteran in need. What veterans often need more than anything else is a non-judgmental person who listens without judging or giving advice. If you have someone in your life that you suspect is having a hard time, just letting them know you’re there to listen if they need to talk is invaluable support.

#4. Support legislative efforts that help veterans

There are federal and state initiatives that help veterans in need. You can support these programs by reaching out to your legislators and letting them know you care about supporting veterans. If you live in a state where a significant issue affects veterans’ health, you can also get involved in legislative action. For example, in California, a bill would help veterans by increasing access to organ transplants. By getting involved, you can help make a difference in the lives of veterans in your community.

#5. Help raise awareness of resources available to Veterans

mental health awareness
Nearly 1 in 4 active duty members have shown signs of a mental health issue. (Source: Defense Visual Information Distribution Service/getarchive)

Often veterans are unaware of the programs and services available to them. Your support can help change that. You can help veterans in your community by sharing information about programs and services they can use. You can do this by posting information on your social media pages, discussing it with friends and colleagues, and educating your local community about what is available. By helping to raise awareness of these programs, you can help struggling veterans in your community get the help they need.

#6. Donate your skills and talents to organizations that support veterans

There are countless organizations that support veterans by providing services such as counseling and medical care. You can get involved by volunteering your skills and talents. You might be surprised at the number of veterans’ organizations that need administrative help. If you have marketing or other business services you can offer, you can often help veterans’ organizations provide more services to veterans in need.

Conclusion

Veterans in your community are at risk of suicide every day. Although suicide is complex, there are many ways to support veterans in your community by raising awareness of the issue, supporting legislative efforts that help veterans, helping to raise awareness of available resources, and volunteering your skills. and your talents to organizations that support veterans.
By taking these steps, you can help prevent future veteran suicides and improve the lives of veterans in your community.

Footnote:

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Tars out!