Army Health Promotion, Risk Reduction, Suicide Prevention: Report 2010
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY WASHINGTON DC
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This report reflects a years worth of work at the direction of the Armys Senior Leadership to provide a directed telescope on the alarming rate of suicides in the Army. It represents both initial findings of the Army Suicide Prevention Task Force and informs the future of Suicide Prevention within the Army. Suicide is a devastating event. What was once considered a private affair or family matter now threatens our Armys readiness. Equally alarming to the rising rate of suicide in the Army is an increasing number of Soldiers who engage in high risk behavior. Equivocal deaths, deaths by drug toxicity, accidental deaths, attempted suicides, and drug overdoses are reducing the ranks and negatively effecting the Armys ability to engage in contingency operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. These deaths further strain efforts to sustain institutional operations. No one could have foreseen the impact of nine years of war on our leaders and Soldiers. As a result of the protracted and intense operational tempo, the Army has lost its former situational awareness and understanding of good order and discipline within its ranks. This reports comprehensive review exposes gaps in how we see, identify, engage and mitigate high risk Soldiers. These gaps exist in our systems and processes due in part to Army Transformation and nearly a decade of war. Policy, process, structure and programs have not kept pace with the expanding needs of our strained Army. While leadership schools emphasize battlefield skills, leaders are not as adept at negotiating the art of leadership in a garrison environment as they were prior to OEF and OIF. Failure to execute policies designed to ensure good order and discipline in garrison sends a message of permissive complacency.
- Weapons Effects (Biological)