WASHINGTON, Jan. 20, 2012 – A newly released Army study on behavioral health shows a decline in soldier suicides and more seeking treatment for their problems.
Gen. Peter W. Chiarelli, Army vice chief of staff, discussed the findings of the report, "Generating Health and Discipline in the Force, Ahead of the Strategic Reset," at a Pentagon news conference yesterday. The three-year study outlines the problem of suicide in the Army and related issues of substance abuse, spouse abuse and child abuse.
Two years ago, the Army reported 210,000 soldiers sought treatment for behavioral health problems, Chiarelli said, adding that public reaction was, “'My gosh, you've got that many in the Army? That's not good, is it?'
"I told them we'd like to see that number go up,” he said. “And in fact, it has gone up. It's gone up to 280,000. I think we have begun the process in the Army of destigmatizing behavior health issues. That, to me, is absolutely critical. People who need help, get the help that they need.”
More soldiers seek help because of the help of commanders and leaders at all levels, Chiarelli added.
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