North Carolina News

High Suicide Rates Continue

The Department of Defense has reported that during 2012, across all four branches of the military, more than 349 service members committed suicide.  These numbers come at the same time efforts to curb suicide in the armed branches have increased.  Advocates stress that services are needed not just for servicemembers, but also for their families, who are often the first to see problems in their loved ones.   Both governmental agencies and non-profits are working hard to provide prevention and educational […]

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Hearing Loss a Problem

Hearing loss is a preventable condition that has affected at least twenty-five percent of soldiers who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan, and it is not solely a combat-related condition.  Fort Bragg Spec. Jon Michael Cripps of the 18th Airborne Corps, whose hearing loss is attributed to the constant noise of computers, generators, and air conditioners states “You think about maybe getting wounded in battle, getting those kinds of scars,” but  “Losing your hearing is just not something you think […]

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Homeless Vet Programs Having an Impact

A new report from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) indicates that homelessness among veterans has decreased 17.2 percent since 2009.  Advocates and Veterans Affairs staff attribute this decline to the success of the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, and the VA-HUD partnership which provides vouchers for veterans to rent from private market landlords. The numbers have not declined for all veteran groups though, as pointed out by advocates who report an increase in […]

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VA Finds High Rates

In a recently completed study by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), researchers found that sexual assault rates were higher than previously reported.   The study conducted using anonymous surveys mailed to 1,100 previously deployed female servicemembers found that 22.8 percent of women servicemembers reported experiencing sexual assault, and 48.6 percent reported experiencing sexual harassment.  The results of this study highlight the importance of providing ongoing prevention programs and the continuance of treatment programs for women servicemembers and veterans across the […]

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PTSD Rates Higher

New data from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) shows that more Iraqi and Afghanistan veterans than previously reported have sought care for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  The new numbers indicate that of the veterans who requested care, 30 percent were seeking care for PTSD, 4 percent more than previously reported.   The report also revised the total percentage of veterans seeking mental health treatment upwards to 53.3 percent. The numbers that were higher than expected are likely to […]

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Local Mother Talks PTSD

Local mother, Gail Wert talks candidly about the effect that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has had on her son Kevin, a Servicemember deployed for one year in Afghanistan.  Ms. Wert describes the changes she has observed in her son’s behavior and functioning due to PTSD, and how these changes affect his daily life. For the complete story and accompanying video, click here.

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Veterans Transition Help

A news series highlights the work of the non-profit Charlotte Bridge Home, an organization that assists veterans transitioning to civilian life.  To date, approximately 250 veterans or veterans’ family members have received assistance relocating to the Charlotte, North Carolina area, a number that the organization expects to grow.  Staff members meet with veterans and their family members to determine what transition assistance they might need, including help with obtaining employment. Click here to read the first report in the series.

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New Military Policy

Starting this month, the U.S. military will utilize breathalyzer tests at Marine bases to combat the high rates of reported alcohol use among troops.  The new policy subjects Marines to twice yearly random tests, and depending on the results, a positive test could result in referrals for additional testing, screening, or medical evaluations.  The new policy aims to improve the overall health of the troops and to reduce the incidence of alcohol abuse among military personnel.  This new policy will […]

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Gubernatorial Visit

The Governor and Governor-Elect visited military bases together on Friday, December 14,  2012.  The visits highlight the contributions the military community has made to North Carolina and the Nation and served to reemphasize leadership’s commitment to support these communities. Click for details on the visit to Fort Bragg, Camp Lejeune, and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

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