Ranking Member Bost’s Statement on Annual Veteran Suicide Data
Today, Rep. Mike Bost (R-Ill.), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, released the following statement after the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) released its National Veteran Suicide Prevention Annual Report, revealing a decrease in veteran suicide from 2019 to 2020.
“I am encouraged to see that the overall veteran suicide rate continued to decrease in 2020. This is welcome news, especially given the circumstances during COVID isolation in 2020. However, I am concerned that this data fails to recognize a spike in overdose-related or accidental deaths that may be linked to suicidal ideation,” said Ranking Member Bost. “I hope that the critical investments Congress has made over the past decade in mental health resources inside and outside VA will bring the veteran suicide rate down even more. The SSG Fox Suicide Prevention Grant Program is one of those critical investments, and I am glad that VA is finally moving forward with supporting community organizations doing life-saving work across the country. I want every veteran to know that there is no shame in taking care of your mental health. It’s on us to continue to break the stigma.”
If you or a veteran you know is having thoughts of suicide, contact the Veterans Crisis Line to receive free, confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Call 988 and Press 1, text 838255, or visit http://VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.