Community Events

Candidates, vets to gather Saturday to highlight veteran suicide problem

Candidates, veterans and family members will gather Saturday, October 29 at 10:45 AM in the Cedar Creek Room in the Vermont State House to draw attention to the problem of suicide and opioid addiction among Vermont veterans. 

Candidates include Gerald Malloy (GOP-U.S. Senate), a retired U.S. Army officer; Ericka Redic (Libertarian-U.S. Congress), who is in longtime recovery from substance abuse; J.T. Dodge (Republican-Vermont Senate from Caledonia County), and Jarrod Sammis (Vermont House of Representatives from Castleton).

The Veterans Administration announced recently that nationally, veteran suicides have fallen from the height of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. However, a new analysis released Saturday by independent researchers suggests that the number of deaths may be significantly higher – more than double the VA’s estimate when death certificate and record errors, drug overdoses, and unexplained deaths are all taken into account.

The plight of veterans at risk of suicide took center stage – briefly – in late July when a veteran with mental problems tried to force his way into the home of his neighbor, Vermont Commissioner of Labor Michael Harrington. After David Young was briefly placed under observation at a local hospital, he was released because he couldn’t be held against his will under state law. He then went home and shot himself to death.

Categories: Community Events

4 replies »

  1. Many thanks to J.T. Dodge for organizing this event. Far too many families in Vermont have been affected by suicide. Mr. Dodge put himself on the line today, along with Ericka Redic, Gerald Malloy and Jarrod Sammis.
    Each spoke from the heart and expressed their concern for the Men and Women who have served or are serving our country.
    America and Vermont can make life changing decisions to protect all involved with PTSD, TBI, Depression and all the debilitating illnesses.
    Each of these candidates have made this an important part of why they are running.
    I am thankful for each of them.

  2. The country and it’s citizens need to recognize the responsability we have towards our veterans. Every veteran who is homeless or who commits suicide is a stain on the honor of our great nation.

  3. There need to be much more funding for the VA, especially for mental health and addiction treatment for our Vets.

  4. Supporting the VA should be a priority for anyone, especially politicians voting to send our troops to war.

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