President Obama signed The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act law earlier this year to address the shockingly high suicide rate among U.S. veterans. California has the largest veteran population in the country, at 2 million. With the rate of veteran suicides rising to 22 a day, the importance of this law did as well. The new law requires the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to ensure that mental health services through the VA Hospitals are accessible, reliable and consistent.
A discharge from the military does not neutralize the experiences a veteran has accumulated, nor make it easier for the veteran to return home and pick up where he left off. Veterans continue to carry the war with them. This new method will be geared toward war and combat related experiences, suicide and reintegration. The peer support groups will provide an opportunity for fellow veterans to work together in coping with experiences they share and the effect it can have on successful reintegration into civilian roles.
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