Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sen. Claire McCaskill wants answers on military substance abuse program

When they have an addiction and want help, that takes courage. I know because my father was not only a disabled Korean War veteran, he was also an alcoholic. It took a lot for him to get to the point where he wanted to do whatever it took to stop drinking. To have them made to feel as if they should have never sought help if appalling.
There is one more thing that needs to be considered here. That's self-medicating. Most of the time without the diagnosis of PTSD, self-medicating can appear to be the same as an addiction. The problem is, they are not addicted to the chemicals but addicted to killing off feelings they don't want to feel and claiming themselves down. Too many have been treated for addictions when they were not addicted and PTSD had gone untreated, so the treatment for addiction was worse than a waste of time. It prolonged the agony.
Senator wants substance-abuse program review
By Rick Maze - Staff writer
Posted : Thursday Jan 29, 2009 17:31:54 EST

A Missouri lawmaker wants service members who seek help for substance abuse problems to be shielded from disciplinary action.

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, is pushing for a review of military treatment and prevention programs for alcohol and substance abuse to look at whether the threat of punishment for admitting a problem is discouraging people from getting help.

She also is concerned about mismanagement and chronic understaffing of substance abuse programs.

Both Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Army Secretary Pete Geren have promised McCaskill they will investigate problems, but she is pressing ahead with legislation calling for a comprehensive review of current programs, new research into substance abuse treatment and an independent study of substance abuse in the ranks.

In a statement, McCaskill said her concerns come after looking into whistle-blower complaints involving the substance abuse program at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., where the Army employee who pointed out problems said he later suffered reprisals. click link for more