We all can take action to help prevent suicide, but many people don’t know what they can do to support the Veteran or Service member in their life who is going through a difficult time. A simple act of kindness can help someone feel less alone. Suicide prevention can start with one simple act of support: Be There

In the US, military veterans experience higher risk and rates of suicidal behavior than the adult civilian population. The risk of suicide among veterans is 22 percent higher than that of civilian adults, and the rate of suicide is twice as high among veterans as compared to non-veteran adults. Although veterans comprise 8.5 percent of the US population, they account for 18 percent of suicide decedents. Suicide risk for male veterans is 19 percent higher than male civilians, and the suicide risk for female veterans is 2.5 times that of civilian females. Risk of suicide increases if deployment occurs during the first year of service or shortly after a previous deployment or if military sexual trauma is experienced.

Veterans, Service members, and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, send a text message to 838255, or chat online to receive free, confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, even if they are not registered with VA or enrolled in VA health care.

The responders at the Veterans Crisis Line are specially trained and experienced in helping Veterans of all ages and circumstances — from those coping with mental health issues that were never addressed to recent Veterans dealing with relationships or the transition back to civilian life.

Since its launch in 2007, the Veterans Crisis Line has answered nearly 2.8 million calls and initiated the dispatch of emergency services to callers in crisis nearly 74,000 times. The Veterans Crisis Line anonymous online chat service, added in 2009, has engaged in more than 332,000 chats. In November 2011, the Veterans Crisis Line introduced a text-messaging service to provide another way for Veterans to connect with confidential, round-the-clock support, and since then has responded to more than 67,000 texts.

If you recognize a person with the symptoms of PTS or in crisis go to BeThere.

Go to www.TADPGS.com, click on the “Looking for People” tab, then view “Veterans Solutions”. To see more information for Veterans, please join our LinkedIn group, Veterans Hiring Solutions for Veterans at http://linkd.in/Sg346w. If you have specific questions, contact me at [email protected]