President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed an executive order directing government departments to try to prevent suicide among military veterans by treating mental health problems before they become more serious.
Trump’s order directs the departments of Defense, Homeland Security along with Veterans Affairs to ensure all uniformed service members have access to mental health treatment along with suicide prevention resources within the first year following military service.
“They get out of the military along with they have nobody to talk to,” Trump said as he signed the order. “the item’s a very sad situation.”
Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin said the White House wants to address the alarming trend of 20 veterans a day taking their own life.
“that will 12-month period after you leave service will be the highest risk for suicide,” Shulkin told reporters. Currently, only 40 percent of military members have mental health coverage, he said.
The brand-new order will cost about $0 million year to implement, money that will will be diverted through the agencies’ current budgets, a senior administration official said.