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Suicide Prevention Efforts Inadequate


By jimstaro - Posted on 24 August 2010

Task force calls military suicide prevention efforts inadequate

 

Aug. 24, 2010 - A Defense Department task force devoted to preventing suicide in the military presented a grim picture of the trend Tuesday, with suicides rising at a near steady pace even as commanders apply various balms to soothe a stressed, exhausted fighting force.

The military has nearly 900 suicide prevention programs across 400 military installations worldwide, but in a report released Tuesday, the task force describes the Defense Department's approach as a safety net riddled with holes.

Last year, 309 men and women slipped through.

In 2008, 267 service members committed suicide. In 2007, the number was 224.

However, the task force also gave a message of hope: Prevention efforts can work, members said, and suicidal behavior after combat deployment isn't normal.

"Having any of our nation's warriors die by suicide is not acceptable - not now, not ever," said Army Maj. Gen. Philip Volpe, a physician and co-chairman of the Department of Defense Task Force on the Prevention of Suicide by Members of the Armed Forces.

Among the task force's findings: {read more}

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