Since 9/11, four times as many U.S. service members and veterans have died by suicide than have been killed in combat, according to a new report.
The research, compiled by the Costs of War Project at Brown University, found an estimated 30,177 active duty personnel and veterans who have served in the military since 9/11 have died by suicide, compared with 7,057 killed in post 9/11 military operations. The figures include all service members, not just those who served in combat during that time.
The report’s author, Thomas “Ben” Suitt III, told NBC News the number is likely higher and attributes the climbing suicide rate in part to an indifference by the American public. “For veterans to come home to an uncaring civilian population or to an uncaring public, that must be devastating,” Suitt said.
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VA press secretary Terrence Hayes said suicide among veterans "remains a challenging and heartbreaking issue that VA is fully committed to working in partnership with federal, tribal, state, and local government to find innovative ways to reduce suicides and deliver expedient care to those in need."
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741 or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional resources.