Friday, August 10, 2012

Funding Support to Rehabilitate Veteran Offenders

Whilst applauding the current and planned support for veterans with physical injuries, much more needs to be provided to help those suffering mental illness. 

The reality is that veteran mental health problems tend not to be recognised until many years after leaving the service, by which time those suffering such injuries have often lost their way in life.  With feelings of confusion, fear, poor self-worth, guilt and shame, family breakdown and suicide rates are increasing.  Similarly, more veterans are ending up in prison or on probation. 

Within the spirit of the Armed Forces Covenant, the Nation pledged to care and support our veterans and their families.  Yet those suffering mental illness are often not understood and lack the most basic support.  The cost to the Nation is considerable, with many millions of pounds each year being spent on benefit payments, the loss of taxes and NI contributions, health care, family social services, police, courts, prison and probation. 

To date, it appears that the majority of charitable funding is directed towards those still serving. Once back in civilian life, ongoing funding and support is limited.  Importantly, there is a growing need to fund those voluntary sector organisations that are striving to help our veterans years after leaving the service, particularly those suffering mental illness.  With appropriate help, many veterans could once again become productive citizens.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Avoiding Prison - Helping Veterans with Mental Health Problems

If you think you know a veteran who is suffering with mental health issues, encourage them to seek help.  Failure to access support can lead to even greater troubles, including prison or worse!!

This short film may help - Don't Bottle It - Helping Veterans with Mental Health Issues