Army concerned over Guard suicides
Friday, November 26, 2021 10:20 AM

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Eighty-six non-active-duty Guard soldiers committed suicide in the first 10 months of 2010 compared with 48 suicides in all of 2009, USA Today reported Friday.

Officials don't know why the suicide rate is increasing among National Guard soldiers, said Army Col. Chris Philbrick, deputy commander of an Army task force working to reduce suicides.

Philbrick said investigations into suicides of soldiers not on full-time active duty found some were facing stressful situations, such as loss of employment, home foreclosure and other debt.

He said other factors, including relationship issues, depression, substance abuse and mild brain injuries, could be responsible for the increase in suicides among non-active-duty Guard troops.

The increase comes at a time when the rate of suicides among full-time Army soldiers has leveled off.

Philbrick said active-duty soldiers have greater access to mental health resources and the Army's efforts to reduce suicide is starting to pay off.

"We do whatever we can to drive down these numbers," Philbrick said. "But it doesn't happen overnight."

Through October, there were 252 confirmed suicides among active and inactive Army members. There were 242 in all of 2009.

The Army has also launched a series of programs to break down a stigma among soldiers against seeking mental health treatment, Philbrick said.

(Source: UPI )
(Source: Quotemedia)
 

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