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Raymond T. OdiernoArmy expanding mental health program despite research

The Army is expanding a $50-million-per-year program created in 2009 to help soldiers withstand mental illnesses such as post-traumatic stress disorder despite research by its own scientists showing it does nothing to reduce PTSD.

Read more: http://www.usatoday.com/story/nation/2013/10/07/army-resilience-training-research-criticism/2938069/

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MMMVeterans, caregivers at Bangor event praise law allowing use of marijuana to treat PTSD

BANGOR, Maine — Former U.S. Marine Sgt. Ryan Begin returned from war in Iraq without his right elbow. A roadside bomb destroyed it in 2004. Begin’s scars weren’t all visible when he returned home.

“You can’t trust anyone,” said Begin, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder in the wake of his service. “Any situation, all you can see is the danger.”

Read more: http://www.mainemedicalmarijuana.org/veterans-caregivers-at-bangor-event-praise-law-allowing-use-of-marijuana-to/

Senator Patty Murray Calls for Changes at the Department of Veterans Affairs in Wake of Suicides (May 1, 2008)

Despite recent efforts by the Veterans Administration to prevent veteran suicide, seven have committed suicide in the Inland Northwest in the last four months and US Senator Patty Murray is calling the situation unacceptable. -4 News Now (May 1, 2008)

Related Links:
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
Veterans – United States Senator Patty Murray
“Epidemic” of military suicides investigated
Veterans and Suicide | CBS (November 13, 2007)
President Bush Signed the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Into Law
Army National Guardsman Spc. Timothy Juneman Died by Suicide; Family Shares Imminent Redeployment to Iraq ‘Major Stressor’ (March 5, 2008)
CBS News: Veteran Suicides An Epidemic (March 20, 2008)
Seven Veterans Under VA’s Care Commit Suicide
Murray calls for changes in VA in wake of veteran suicides
Murray Assails Top VA Official over Vets Suicide Cover-Up
Rural Veterans Access to Care Act, VA’s ‘Strength of a Warrior’ Campaign, Sen. Patty Murray Calls for More to Be Done for Suicidal Vets
Murray’s visit to Vancouver puts focus on veterans issues
New data reveals high death rates for Iraq, Afghanistan vets
Investigation blasts VA over wait times for mental health care
Senator Patty Murray: Veteran’s suicide prevention bill passes Senate
Murray Reiterates Mental Health Challenges Facing Veterans
U.S. military veteran suicides rise, one dies every 65 minutes
Mental Health and Suicide Among Veterans (Senate Hearing)
Waiting At VA Hospitals: A Matter Of Life And Death
Sen. Murray: VA system needs change now, not another report
Spokane Veterans Affairs hospital brings budget concerns to Sen. Patty Murray
Senator Patty Murray Urges DEA to Get Right on Pot
Sen. Murray Urges Greater Accountability, Assistance for Veteran Suicide Prevention at Senate Hearing
As Senate Prepares to Vote on Sweeping Legislation to Improve Veteran Access to Care, Senator Murray Highlights a Provision of the Bill That She Wrote, Which Would Finally Expand VA’s Caregiver Support Program
Senator Murray Continues to Fight for Veterans and their Families, Urges Support for Bill to Reduce Medical Costs for Veterans with Newborns
Timeline of Veteran Suicides, Legislative Efforts, and Nationwide Negligence at the Department of Veterans Affairs

Army National Guardsman Spc. Timothy Juneman Died by Suicide; Family Shares Imminent Redeployment to Iraq ‘Major Stressor’ (March 5, 2008)

Timothy Juneman

Spc. Timothy Juneman, Washington Army National Guard (Screenshot from DVIDS)

“The identity of one other veteran who killed himself this year became public when his family wrote U.S. Sen. Patty Murray in April about concerns with VA mental health care. Spc. Timothy Juneman, 25, a National Guardsman and former [Fort Lewis] Stryker Brigade soldier who was injured in a roadside explosion in Iraq, died March 5, 2008…Juneman’s body was found in his Pullman home March 25, nearly three weeks after he had hanged himself. He had missed several appointments at the Spokane VA. In records obtained by Juneman before his death, Brown wrote that imminent redeployment to Iraq with the National Guard was a ‘major stressor’ contributing to Juneman’s condition, his mother said.” Read more from The Spokesman here.

In the News:

CBS News first reported on the staggering number of veteran suicides in a report last year. Now, newly-released data shows that vets who get help from the VA are still at risk. -CBS News (March 20, 2008)

They served their country honorably but after risking their life in combat abroad, coping with coming home was too much. In the last three months seven servicemen being treated by Spokane’s VA Hospital have committed suicide. -4 News Now (April 29, 2008)

Despite recent efforts by the Veterans Administration to prevent veteran suicide, seven have committed suicide in the Inland Northwest in the last four months and US Senator Patty Murray is calling the situation unacceptable. -4 News Now (May 1, 2008)

Related Links:
Timothy Dean Juneman | Find A Grave
Timothy D. Juneman | Time of Remembrance
Interview with SPC Timothy Juneman | DVIDS
Lives lost at home | The Spokeman-Review
Apr. 29, More Suicide News: Seven Veterans Under VA Care in Washington Commit Suicide
US: Veteran turned away from military hospital commits suicide
Distress Signal | The American Prospect
Local veteran’s suicide reflects troubling trend
Suicide Watch | The New Republic
Soldiers’ emotional battle scars put doctors in dilemma
Veteran Suicides An Epidemic (CBS News)
Seven veterans under VA’s care commit suicide
Murray calls for changes in VA in wake of veteran suicides
Timeline of Veteran Suicides, Legislative Efforts, and Nationwide Negligence at the Department of Veterans Affairs

Eye to Eye with Katie Couric on CBS News: Veterans and Suicide (November 13, 2007)

Paul Sullivan of Veterans for Common Sense tells Armen Keteyian that the No. 1 problem facing vets of Afghanistan and Iraq will be mental health. -CBS News (November 13, 2007)

Related Links:
Eye To Eye: Vets And Suicide (CBS News)
The Veteran Suicide “Epidemic” (CBS News)
Nov. 13: CBS News Interviews VCS About Epidemic of Iraq War Veteran Suicides
CBS News: Veteran Suicides An Epidemic (March 20, 2008)
Timeline of Veteran Suicides, Legislative Efforts, and Nationwide Negligence at the Department of Veterans Affairs
Wounded Warrior Project
Home Base Program, Veteran & Family Care
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
American Federation of Suicide Prevention
NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness
320 Changes Direction – The Campaign to Change Direction
Give an Hour: Department of Veteran’s Affairs Partnership
US Department of Veterans Affairs
VA MISSION Act

President George W. Bush Signed the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Into Law (November 5, 2007)

House of Representatives Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Debate:

The House debates the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act, which directs the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to develop and implement a comprehensive program to reduce the incidence of suicide among veterans. The bill is named for an Iraq veteran who took his own life, and recognizes the special needs of veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and elderly veterans who are at high risk for depression and experience high rates of suicide. The bill follows hearings in the Oversight and Veterans Affairs committees seeking to address the tragic mental anguish experienced by many veterans, and is part of ongoing, comprehensive efforts by the new Congress to make veterans a top priority. Rep. Tim Walz speaks in favor. -Nancy Pelosi (October 23, 2007)

Rep. Bruce Braley speaks in favor. -Nancy Pelosi (October 23, 2007)

Rep. Tim Walz speaks in favor. -Nancy Pelosi (October 23, 2007)

Congressman Boswell’s floor statement before the final passage of the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act. (October 23, 2007)

Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Signed Into Law:

Iowa Gov. Chet Culver, Congressman Leonard Boswell, Sen. Tom Harkin and Sen. Charles Grassley present Randy and Ellen Omvig with the red line copy of the bill signed by President George W. Bush at a Jan. 25 ceremony at the Iowa Statehouse. Joshua Omvig was an Iowa soldier who committed suicide upon returning home from Iraq. The Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act, authored by Boswell, is now national law. –
IowaPoliticsDotCom (January 25, 2008)

Part 1 -IowaPoliticsDotCom (January 25, 2008)

Part 2 -IowaPoliticsDotCom (January 25, 2008)

Part 3 -IowaPoliticsDotCom (January 25, 2008)

Rep. Boswell Asks for Increased Funding for Soldier Suicide Prevention:

In 2007, Boswell’s legislation, the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act, was the first major legislation passed and signed into law to address and prevent veteran suicide. Since enactment, the Veterans Crisis Hotline and VA Suicide Prevention Coordinators have made more than 21,000 life-saving rescues. -Rep. Leonard Boswell (July 9, 2012)

Related Links:
Giving Vets Their Due
Families blame vet suicides on lack of VA care
The Joshua Omvig Suicide Prevention Act
Omvig bill addressing suicide among veterans moves closer to law
President Bush Signs H.R. 327 and H.R. 1284 into Law
Rep. Walz on Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
Rep. Braley on Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
Boswell – H.R.327 Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention
Iowa lawmakers honor Iowa soldier, family (part 1)
Iowa lawmakers honor Iowa soldier, family (part 2)
Iowa lawmakers honor Iowa soldier, family (part 3)
Rep. Leonard Boswell on Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
Boswell Speaks on Floor for Increased Funding for Soldier Suicide Prevention
H.R.327 – Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
H.R. 327 (110th): Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
Public Law 110 – 110 – Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
House Passes Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
HOR: Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
S.3808: Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act
S. 479, Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act | CBO
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention | Senator Patty Murray
Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act | Cornell Law School
Vets’ Mental Health Bill Becomes Law
The Full Story: Veterans And Suicide | CBS News
National Strategy for Preventing Veteran Suicide – VA Mental Health
Suicide rate for veterans far exceeds that of civilian population
Voices: The heartbreak of veterans’ suicides
Parents on VA mental health care: ‘No one was there to help’
Leonard Boswell, Veterans’ Champion in the House, Dies at 84
Army Reservist Joshua Omvig Died by Suicide; Parents Lobby for Change, Congress Passes Veterans Suicide Prevention Act in His Name (December 22, 2005)
Timeline of Veteran Suicides, Legislative Efforts, and Nationwide Negligence at the Department of Veterans Affairs

NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams Featured ‘The Other PTSD: Sexual Abuse of Women in the Military’ (May 4, 2007)

The Other PTSD: Sexual Abuse of Women in the Military, NBC Nightly News (May 4, 2007)

“All the stories you hear about women not doing anything about it and crawling into their own little hole and hiding from it and not talking about it — I always thought, ‘Well, that’s ridiculous. If it happens to me, I’m gonna be out there,” Tina says. “That’s not what I did at all. I hid and I didn’t talk about it.” –NBC Nightly News

Related Links:
The Other PTSD: Sexual Abuse of Women in the Military (May 4, 2007)
Military sexual trauma — the new face of PTSD | NBC Nightly News
Men’s Trauma Recovery Program (MTRP) | Department of Veterans Affairs
Women’s Trauma Recovery Program (WTRP) | Department of Veterans Affairs
Veterans for Peace: Sexual Assault on Military Members Press Conference, Seattle, Washington (August 11, 2006)
Jamie Leigh Jones Testified at the House Judiciary Committee Halliburton/KBR Iraq Rape Case Hearing (December 19, 2007)
Air Force TSgt. Jennifer Norris Testified Before the House Armed Services Committee in Washington DC (January 23, 2013)
CBS News: Sexual assault victim, “The system is rigged” (May 16, 2013)
Paying It Forward Thanks to Army Specialist Suzanne Swift (March 6, 2016)
Christine Hassing Published ‘Jennifer and Onyx’ | Our Story of Triumph & Hope After Military Sexual Trauma (February 17, 2019)