by John Dankosky – On Monday’s Where We Live, we’ll revisit a conversation about the problem of homeless veterans in Connecticut and nationwide. The federal government has made it a priority to find homes for all vets, but homelessness isn’t the only problem they face. Mental illness, substance abuse, and the stigma that come with them can make it hard for veterans of any age to seek and find help.
I recommend Jamie Tarabay’s story from NPR’s Morning Edition about a rise in suicides among troops – it includes this shocking fact:
Nearly as many American troops at home and abroad have committed suicide this year as have been killed in combat in Afghanistan. Alarmed at the growing rate of soldiers taking their own lives, the Army has begun investigating its mental health and suicide prevention programs.
Meanwhile, some mildly good news from HUD about the overall numbers of homeless in America. Monica Polanco reports in the Courant:
The number of homeless people across the country declined by 5 percent in 2009, while the number of homeless families rose by 7 percent, according to a new report by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The better numbers are attributed to an increase in permanent supportive housing.