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Hannah Sinoway | September 10, 2014

Read: A message from Jason Hansman on National Suicide Prevention Day

September is National Suicide Prevention Month and this may be the most critical one yet.

It’s estimated that 22 veterans take their own lives every day. So that means, as of yesterday, 5,544 veterans have been lost in 2014 alone. And today that number is 5,566. And by the end of the month it will be 6,006. And by December 31st that means we’ll have lost 8,030 of our bravest men and women. These numbers are unacceptable. And that’s why IAVA’s top priority in 2014 is lowering these rates.

We’re doing that through our innovative Campaign to Combat Suicide, which focuses on federal and local government action, leveraging entertainers and the media, and, most importantly, the American people.

So that’s why we need you to share this information on your social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. We have included recommended language below, but it’s just a guide. Please make it your own and show your networks why this matters so much to you.

As of September 9th, 5544 veterans have died by suicide just this year.

So while you spread awareness across the Internet, our Convoy to Combat Suicide will continue to roll along, our policy team in DC will continue pushing the Clay Hunt SAV Act through Congress, and we’ll keep on banging the drum until all Americans know how serious of an issue this really is – especially for our community.

IAVA strives to connect veterans to top-rated mental health services, including partnering with the VA’s Veterans Crisis Line to ensure that every service member, veteran, family member and provider knows that there is free and confidential help available 24 hours a day through phone, text and online. So veterans, or those concerned about veterans, can call 800-273-8255 and press 1 to be directly connected to qualified responders. It’s an easy phone call and it could save a life. Either yours or someone you love.

Lowering the veteran suicide is a huge task, but we are stronger together. And together, we can do it.

On behalf of the entire IAVA community, thank you for standing with us.

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