Finding the Way to Zero: Suicide Prevention

Today I want to talk to you the veteran about some staggering statistics and some of the overall structure the programs we had to combat the epidemic of veteran suicide. An average of 20 veterans a day take their own lives this is twenty too many and we need to find a way to zero. I came in with the wall but they slowly gradually broke it down and they allowed me to express my deepest darkest secrets in my nightmares. Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the u.s. Approximately 18% of all suicidal deaths among us males were veterans. Monthly there are nearly 764 suicide attempts by US veterans. Veterans are more likely to use firearms as a means. They pulled me out of that depression that I was in and I’ve been strong ever since. The VA nationally and the Memphis VA specifically provide immediate care for all suicidal veterans in the ER, the walk-in outpatient mental health clinic and VA community-based outpatient clinics. Thats a step to say, “hey we care we’re here for you this is what you need to do” without having to take everything away from us. The Memphis VA also provides outpatient mental health coordinated care services such as suicide prevention, case management, reach vet, clay hunt, peer support specialist, compensated work therapy and psychosocial rehabilitation and recovery center services. Veterans might be depressed in my decided to even commit suicide but with the gun lock it might give them a little bit more kind of think. The Memphis VA addresses the primary means a veteran suicide by providing gun safety seminars that focus on education and training about how to safely remove and secure a weapon. Additionally as part of this effort we provide free gun locks to all attendees. They could have it off their conscience about something accidentally happening with their weapon. Lastly we actively develop community alliances with nonprofit agencies and community health care providers to reach into all corners or our veterans lives such as at the home, faith-based environments, VA outreach events and the homeless community. With your help we will continue to develop multiple means of eliminating veteran suicide and make our way to zero. There’s hope that’s all you gotta do is keep the hope. [Music]

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