Shaheen Statement on Trump’s Executive Order to Address Veteran Suicide

March 05, 2019

Washington, D.C.— U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) issued the following statement in response to the President’s executive order to address the alarming suicide rate among veterans: 

“I’m glad that the President is addressing this critically important issue, and I believe this effort is a step in the right direction to confront the alarming rate of suicide among our veteran population,” said Shaheen. “Our nation owes our servicemen and women the best care and support when they return, and that includes comprehensive mental health services. I’ve fought to protect programs like Beyond the Yellow Ribbon for precisely this reason – our military members should have every tool available to live healthy lives when they come home. I’ll continue to explore additional ways to provide federal resources for these programs and others that prioritize veteran suicide prevention.” 

A senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Shaheen successfully secured $20 million for the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon (BYR) program, which funds the New Hampshire National Guard’s Care Coordination Program, in fiscal year (FY) 2019 funding legislation that was signed into law in September. BYR programs provide outreach services to troops returning from deployment, including health care, substance misuse treatment and mental health services. Through her role on the Senate Armed Services Committee, Shaheen has historically fought to include measures to support the Deployment Cycle Support Program, which is funded by the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration program and helps returning National Guard and Reservists reintegrate to civilian life. Senator Shaheen also supported the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act, which was signed into law in 2015.