Sunday, November 29, 2015

Canada Military Suicides "In a sense, these are our forgotten casualties"

National Defence Minister Orders Suicide Prevention As A Priority For Soldiers And Veterans
“In a sense, these are our forgotten casualties.”
The Argus Lakehead University Canada
By Olivia Levesque , Staff Writer
November 26, 2015
“The military will spend a fortune to train a soldier to go to war. They need to spend that same amount of money to repair that soldier when they come back.” says military veteran Darrell McMullin to the Globe and Mail in an interview after the investigation was released.
On the day before Remembrance Day, Globe and Mail released an investigation that had been in the works for months with the Canadian Armed Forces. The investigation known as “The Unremembered” released disturbing statistics of the number of soldiers and veterans who had taken their own lives after serving in Afghanistan.

The numbers show that Canada isn’t just losing troops overseas, but losing them here at home too. Since the beginning of the 13-year NATO-led Afghan mission, 54 military personnel and veterans have committed suicide, according to the statistics released by the Globe and Mail. The number suicides since the beginning of our mission in Afghanistan number more than one third of the number of Canadian troops who killed in action during the conflict itself. It’s a sad reality but it seems those returning from deployment face a war on Canadian soil almost as deadly as the one they faced overseas.

National Defence Minister, Harjit Singh Sajjan, has responded to the investigation by issuing an order to Canada’s top military leader to make suicide prevention a major priority within the Armed Forces. The investigation has also shown that the number of suicides have increased over the past year amongst returning veterans as well. Fourteen suicides were recorded since the beginning of 2014 according to the investigation.
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