Friday, February 19, 2010

Fort Hood, Army still seeing suicide problem

Fort Hood had more suicides in January than any other installation as the Army searched for solutions to a baffling mystery.
Despite a series of programs designed to tackle the problem at the post and throughout the Army, the service's January suicide mark still came close to matching the one from the same month last year — 29.
Three of the 27 suicides reported Wednesday occurred on Fort Hood, which has sent soldiers to combat since the 2003 Iraq invasion.
The chief of the Army Suicide Prevention Task Force talked of the service's efforts to counter the problem rather than discussing the latest numbers, which picked up where a grim 2009 left off.
“We've made significant changes in our health promotion, risk reduction, and suicide prevention programs, policies and initiatives,” Col. Christopher Philbrick said. “Now in 2010, we're going to move from a floodlight to a laser light — identifying our most effective programs, so we can target and reinforce what's working and fix what isn't.”
Last year was the worst for suicides among active-duty soldiers since the Army began tracking those deaths in 1980, with 160 GIs killing themselves at home and in the war zone. That was up from 140 in 2008.

The rest of the story can be found here.