NBC Montana: Funding announced to combat veteran suicide, numbers show decline
MISSOULA, Mont. — New information from the Department of Veterans Affairs shows veteran suicides decreased in 2020 for the second year in a row.
The latest report says there were 6,146 veteran suicide deaths in 2020, 343 fewer than in 2019.
Officials from the VA say 2020 had the fewest veteran suicides since 2006.
U.S. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Montana) announced more $2.15 million in federal funding for Montana organizations to support efforts to end veteran suicide.
That includes $750,000 for the statewide organization Volunteers of America Northern Rockies, another $750,000 for Adaptive Performance Center in Billings and $650,000 for the Rocky Boy Veterans Center in Box Elder.
“Veteran suicide rates are steadily decreasing thanks to mental health and suicide prevention programs under the Hannon Act that are keeping more folks from falling through the cracks,” said Tester. “That’s why I’m proud to have championed these funds that’ll ensure organizations on the ground have the resources they need to keep up the good work and continue connecting Montana veterans with the life-saving tools they need and earned.”
For those in need of help, the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline is just a call or text away. Just dial 988 to reach a trained crisis counselor for free and confidential emotional support.