Again showing North Carolina is leading the way when it comes to reducing Veteran suicides, the NC Governor’s Challenge to Prevent Suicide Among Service Members, Veterans, and their Families is being federally recognized for its plan to advance suicide prevention efforts.

Dr. Matthew Miller, Executive Director of the National VA Suicide Prevention and Acting Executive Director of PREVENTS at the Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, Veterans Health Administration offered the recognition, commending the NC Governor’s Challenge for developing a comprehensive plan to address and prevent suicide among Service Members, Veterans and their families.

Building on the framework of the North Carolina Governors Working Group on Veterans, Challenge initiatives and commitment to this work has kept the number of Veteran suicides in decline.

Priorities include a new 5-point plan recently laid out by the White House: 1) improving lethal means safety, 2) enhancing crisis care and facilitate care transitions, 3) increasing access to and delivery of effective care, 4) addressing upstream risk and protective factors and, 5) increasing research coordination, data sharing, and evaluation efforts.

A recent initiative of NC Challenge to Reduce Veteran Suicide is the five-part series, Social Determinants of Veteran Suicide: (1) an overview of the issue, (2) sources of trauma and their role in self-harm, (3) mental, behavioral, and emotional health conditions resulting from trauma, (4) the effect of social determinants on financial, housing, and relationship stability, and (5) post-traumatic growth and resilience. Part III will be conducted on November 18, from 2:00 to 3:30 pm and be livestreamed on the Governor’s Institute’s Facebook page. Recordings are available on demand on YouTube.