George Wallace said:
Well done to you & your bud for this.Brihard said:I'm blown away by the support we're getting and how widely this is spreading. I'm humbled by how many folks have thrown themselves behind this. Thanks everyone!
(Note: the link embedded in the Road to Mental Readiness page in the statement doesn't seem to be working - it brings you back to the Minister's statement - here's the correct link to the Mental Readiness Training page)“The loss of any member of the Canadian Armed Forces is tragic and affects each and every one of us on the Defence Team. We mourn with the family and friends of the deceased and will help to ensure that the Canadian Armed Forces family supports those left behind in their loss and time of need.
The Government and the Canadian Armed Forces take every death seriously and as such we will explore all facets of these recent deaths to try and learn from them and reduce future occurrences.
We must continue to do all we can as a team to support our personnel, to encourage people in crisis to access our health care system and to reinforce and promote the excellent mental health care system that we have in the Canadian Armed Forces.
Like all Canadians, it is essential that military personnel and former members alike recognize mental health issues when they occur. I want to remind those who may be going through difficult times that they are not alone and there is support available to get them through this.
As Canadians and members of the Canadian Armed Forces, we must all be vigilant of our subordinates, peers, superiors and family members. We need to watch for changes in behaviour, be ready to listen to our friends and aid them in seeking care if we think they need it.
Often, peers and family members are the first to notice behavioural changes such as increased anxiety, anger, sadness, negativity, avoidance and substance-use that could lead to mental health difficulties. When we notice these changes, we must not be afraid to act - do not underestimate the impact you can have.
I encourage those in need to reach out to their families, peers, supervisors, padres and medical professionals. Help is available at your base and wing clinics, via the member assistance program (1 800 268 7708), at your local emergency room or by calling 911.
We all have a responsibility to promote the importance of seeking mental health treatment and to ensuring those in need of care get the assistance they require. For more information on recognizing the signs of mental health problems in your family members and peers, please visit the Road to Mental Readiness website.”
Ladies and Gentlemen, any, each, and every suicide is a tragedy, and the loss of any soldier is painful and heartbreaking to our men, women and families. Although suicide is an international public health concern, for an organization built on leadership, built on camaraderie, and built on strength, it hits us especially hard. We have an expert health care system to support us, but in order for us to help each other, it’s essential that all military personnel, like all Canadians, recognize mental health issues as they develop.
As you’re already aware, we each have a role to serve in identifying and assisting those affected by mental health concerns. Don’t underestimate the direct, positive impact you can have as a leader, as a friend, or as a subordinate. We can all note changes in behaviour, we can all listen to each other, and we can all aid in seeking help.
For those of you currently combating mental illness, don’t avoid or delay accessing support services and treatment. If you have thoughts of suicide, help is immediately available by calling 911. Expert help is also available at your base and wing clinics, via the member assistance program (1-800-268-7708) or at your local emergency room. Reach out to your friends, family members, leaders, padres and medical professionals for support.
Self-stigma regarding mental health must end. Just as you would expect to be helped by your colleagues on the battlefield if you were physically injured, your brothers and sisters in arms are with you in the fight against mental illness.
Care is available to each of us. From private to General, from recruit to retirement; we’re a team and we’re there to support each other.
Pieman said:I'm not sure if this has been posted before. I can honestly say I have met few soldiers so dedicated and driven to do well at his job. Knowing him, taking him out of the military must have been like ripping his face off and telling him to 'carry on':
Mr. Speaker, once again, let me just say, I think that this applies to all members of the House of Commons, all of our thoughts and prayers are with all of the friends and families of those who have been touched by these recent suicides. I think it is the responsibility of all of us to encourage those who need support, those who need help, to get that help. We should reach out to them and encourage them to do that. Those supports are available and we will make sure, of course, that they continue to be available to those people .... those services are available at Service Canada offices across the country. This government has invested far more in services for our veterans. As I just said, our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends who have been touched by these events. It is the responsibility of all of us to encourage those who need support to get that support. We understand the difficulties that our military personnel have faced, and services are available to them .... a number of programs and services are available for our soldiers and veterans. They include the Canadian Armed Forces military assistance program, military family resource centres, the operational stress injury social support program, and the road to mental readiness program. There are more, but the most important thing is that we understand that what our soldiers go through is not easy. The work they do is very hard, very dangerous and full of very difficult experiences. I think it is important for all of us to encourage soldiers who need help to get that help.
Mr. Speaker, as the Prime Minister indicated, our thoughts and prayers go out to the families, colleagues, and friends of these individuals. Suicide is a tragedy, and we have a role to play in reaching out to those who are hurting and encouraging them to get help. I know that the Canadian Armed Forces has a confidential 24/7 toll-free telephone advisory and referral service. I would urge all of those who are going through a crisis to reach out. There is help. We all have a responsibility to make sure that they know that .... we all have a role to play in making sure that the services are there for our men and women in uniform and indeed for our veterans. The member indicated that she would like to see more money spent on health care, more investment, and there certainly has been under this government. We have almost doubled the number of health care professionals. We all do what we have to do to make sure that these individuals are approached and in making sure that they know help is there. I urge them to contact the armed forces to have the services that are in place made available to them .... it was under this government that we created a joint personnel support unit to allow our ill and injured members to work with medical personnel, social workers, occupational therapists and others to help them transition back into civilian life. However, again, one of the things the member could do is start supporting the efforts we have made over the years to increase help to our veterans. That would be a first step, and I certainly would welcome that .... The Chief of the Defence Staff and the Chief of Military Personnel have assured me that members of the Canadian Armed Forces are not released until they are prepared for that transition. I remind the member opposite that every possible accommodation is made to ensure that soldiers are kept in the forces and provided with the best possible support before being considered for release. This is the least we can do for them.
cudmore said:Anyone want to talk about this on the Radio?