August 2, 2010
According to The New York Times, a new United States Army report suggests that while military suicides have reached historic highs, commanders are failing to address soldiers’ mental health and other problems.
For the first time since the Vietnam War, the Army suicide rate has surpassed the civilian rate.
One notable finding challenged the belief that repeated deployments in
However, the report also suggested that continuous deployments in two wars have resulted in a lowering of Army recruiting and retention standards. Many commanders have disregarded high-risk behavior, such as to drinking and taking drugs, among their troops and there has been decrease in soldiers forced to leave the Army for misconduct.
Report recommendations include:
Beginning in fall 2010, Army STARRS investigators will look for factors that help protect a Soldier’s mental health and those factors that put a Soldier’s mental health at risk.