Sen. Tim Kaine helps introduce bipartisan legislation recognizing Sept. 30 as National Veterans Suicide Prevention Day


FILE – In this Sept. 18, 2009, file, photo, A soldier from the U.S. Army’s 118th Military Police Co., based at Fort Bragg, N.C., respond to shots fired at a combat outpost in the Jalrez Valley in Afghanistan’s Wardak Province. Moscow and Washington are intertwined in a complex and bloody history in Afghanistan, with both suffering thousands of dead and wounded in conflicts lasting for years. Now both superpowers are linked again over Afghanistan, with intelligence reports indicating Russia secretly offered bounties to the Taliban to kill American troops there. But analysts suggest that the two adversaries actually have more in common, especially when it comes to what they want to see in a postwar Afghanistan: a stable country that does not serve as a base for extremists to export terrorism. Both countries also are aligned in their opposition to militants from the Islamic State group.(AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — U.S. Senators Time Kaine (D-VA) and Roger Wicker (R-MS) among others introduced bipartisan legislation that would designate September 30th as National Veterans Suicide Prevention Day.

According to the Associated Press, overall military suicides have increased by approximately 20% compared to this time last year.

National Veterans Suicide Prevention Day would highlight the treatable invisible wounds sustained by many service members and recognize the families of veterans who have died by suicide.

“While we must continue working on ways to address this crisis, we must also take the time to recognize the troops we’ve lost and their families,” said Kaine. “I’m hopeful this bill will bring more necessary attention to this issue and offer support and community to more military families who’ve had to endure the tragedy of veteran suicide.”

An average of nearly 20 current or former service members die by suicide each day according to data released by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense.

In addition to this, an estimated 135 individuals are affected by each suicide. This includes family members, friends, and coworkers.

The resolution is also cosponsored by U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-MT) and Jerry Moran (R-KS).

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