Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, released the following statement after the Committee held a legislative hearing on H.R. 3495, the IMPROVE Act, which is bipartisan legislation cosponsored by 228 Members of Congress to prevent suicide among our nation’s veterans:
“2,960 – that’s how many veteran and servicemember lives have been lost to suicide since the introduction of this bipartisan bill 148 days ago. Preventing any other lives from being taken should be our sole focus when considering this legislation – not who met with whom and who gets credit for what. I have been listening closely to the concerns that have been voiced by Chairman Takano and others about this bill over the last few weeks and, at the Chairman’s request, have drafted what I believe is a solid compromise proposal that would address those concerns and save lives. I look forward to continuing to work with Chairman Takano, Secretary Wilkie, and veterans service organizations in the days ahead to, finally, get this important bill across the finish line. With 20 servicemembers and veterans dying by suicide every day for the last 20 years, the stakes could not be higher.”
The IMPROVE Act, introduced by Rep. Jack Bergman (R-MI) and Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA), would expand the reach of services aimed at preventing suicide among veterans by providing grants to community entities that provide and coordinate suicide prevention services for them and their families. Click here for more information about the IMPROVE Act.