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LA County To Take Steps To Track, Help Prevent Veteran Suicides

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) -- The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is taking steps to address suicides among U.S. veterans.

The board voted on Tuesday to establish a review team to track suicides in an attempt to provide more practical help.

Supervisors Kathryn Barger and Sheila Kuehl co-authored the motion.

Over the next 90 days, county staffers will develop recommendations on how to best work with the state Department of Health's
initiative on suicide.

"Most of us are aware that the statistic nationwide is an estimated 20 veterans a day die by suicide,'' Barger said. "But this data is only reflective of national trends and (we need) localized data to ensure that we are targeting the most vulnerable populations.
We know this does not always account for many veterans not being treated by the V.A. or enrolled in V.A. benefits.''

The vote comes just as the nation is acknowledging Mental Health Awareness Month.

Are you a veteran in crisis or concerned about one?

Connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach trained responders with the Department of Veterans Affairs, many of whom are also veterans.

Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 or text 838255. The 24/7 crisis line serves all veterans, all service members, National Guard and Reserve, and their family members and friends.

For non-veterans seeking help, please call 1-800-273-8255.

(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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