Breaking News
More () »

Charlie Foxtrot: Cluster**** (Part 4 of 6)

Sometimes survival means losing everything, including your freedom.

UPDATE: After this series originally aired in late 2016, more than 12,000 people signed a petition calling for Congress to pass the Fairness for Veterans provision. The provision was included in the National Defense Authorization Act, and signed into law in by then-President Obama in late 2016. These stories remain a testament to the struggles faced by veterans every day.

The VA estimates 20 veterans die by suicide every day. That’s one veteran every 72 minutes.

In the military, suicide usually falls into one of two categories: silence or successful completion. But, tough military culture is only partly to blame. Society as a whole turns away from discussing issues of mental health, and essentially avoids the topic of suicide all together.

For every one service member lost to suicide, the military estimates there are 10 more who attempt it. While service members who attempt suicide and survive get a second chance at life, it comes at cost. Military law considers attempted suicide a criminal offense punishable by courts martial or even jail time.

Sometimes survival means losing everything, including your freedom.

Watch part 4 (of 5) above.

Click here for part 1 (of 5)

Click here for part 2 (of 5)

Click here for part 3 (of 5)

Click here for part 5 (of 5)

UPDATE: President signs 'Fairness for Veterans' into law

If you feel moved to act, tell your lawmaker to support Fairness for Vets by signing the petition below. Let your voice be heard on social media by tweeting your Senators and Representatives.

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, 20 U.S. veterans die by suicide every day. About 70 percent of veterans who took their own lives were not regular users of VA services. Veterans with less-than-honorable discharges are the most vulnerable group. These less-than-honorable discharges are often issued to service members for minor misconduct, that experts say, can be behavior linked to PTSD, TBI or other trauma-related injuries.

Now is the time for Fairness for Veterans. Let's give them hope to help heal the invisible wounds of war. Please support this common sense, bi-partisan bill to require the military discharge review boards to consider mental health diagnoses like PTSD and TBI.

I am asking the congressional delegation from my state to commit to changing the discharge review board policy by passing the Fairness for Veterans Act.

Before You Leave, Check This Out