Camden County Commissioner and Gold-Star Mother Melinda Kane moderated a panel discussion about veteran suicide awareness at Camden County College on March 12, 2022. The discussion included veterans sharing their stories, lethal arms and storage safety, and information about #988, which is the veteran’s crisis line. The event also included a veteran resource fair with representatives from organizations ranging from the Travis Manion Foundation to Moms Demand Action, the Camden County Office of Veterans Affairs, and more.
“We here at Camden County are committed to fighting the epidemic of veteran suicide through prevention, education and awareness,” said Commissioner Melinda Kane, who serves as the liaison to the Office of Veterans Affairs. “Bringing an array of resources together for one event is a crucial way that we can support our veterans and offer them a safe space to reach out for the help they may need.”
Veteran suicide is a significant challenge for all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs 2022 National Veteran Suicide Prevention Annual Report, in 2020, there were 6,146 veteran suicides. This was on average 16.8 per day. In 2020, adjusting for population age and sex differences, the suicide rate for Veterans was 57.3% greater than for non-veteran U.S. adults.