Armed Forces News

The House passed a bipartisan measure Dec. 9, aimed at stemming the epidemic of suicides among service members. Sponsored by House Veterans Affairs Committee chairman Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), Rep. Tim Walz (D-Minn.) and Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), the measure includes provisions to require the Department of Veterans Affairs to set up a one-stop, interactive Web site that would serve as a centralized source of related information. VA also would set up a student-loan repayment plan for recruiting and training badly needed psychiatrists. Other provisions address evaluation of VA mental-health and suicide-prevention protocols, establishment of a pilot program to help service members as they transition to civilian life, and require VA to improve collaboration with non-profit mental health groups in suicide-prevention efforts.