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Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America Testifies at Senate Hearing on Veteran Mental Health

IAVA CEO Urges Passage of Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 9, 2020
CONTACT: press@iava.org

Washington, DC – Today, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America’s (IAVA) CEO, Jeremy Butler offered testimony at the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on suicide prevention.

“The time for meaningful legislation to end the veteran suicide crisis is now,” said Jeremy Butler, CEO of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. “The pandemic has placed added pressure on the veteran population. At IAVA, we have seen a marked increase in veterans reaching out to our consolidated care-program, asking for mental health assistance. Passing the Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act is a common-sense way to expand access and research into veteran suicides and reverse the trend.” 

“Currently, 62% of our members report knowing a fellow veteran that has died by suicide,” continued Butler. “That number has risen 22% since 2014, clearly change is necessary. During this unprecedented period our country is facing, I urge legislators to think of servicemembers and veterans and pass the Hannon Act.”

IAVA has been a lead advocate for veteran mental health, working with allies in Congress to craft legislation. The full Senate passed the Hannon Act in August, this momentum needs to carry to the House so veterans can receive improved, quality care for mental health issues. 

IAVA is the voice for the post-9/11 veteran generation. With over 400,000 veterans and allies nationwide, IAVA is the leader in non-partisan veteran advocacy and public awareness. We drive historic impacts for veterans and IAVA’s programs are second to none. Any veteran or family member in need can reach out to IAVA’s Quick Reaction Force at quickreactionforce.org or 855-91RAPID (855-917-2743) to be connected promptly with a veteran care manager who will assist. IAVA’s The Vote Hub is a free tool to register to vote and find polling information. IAVA’s membership is always growing. Join the movement at iava.org/membership.

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