Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly today applauded President Trump’s executive order today directing the Departments of Defense, Veterans Affairs, and Homeland Security to develop a plan to ensure servicemembers transitioning out of the military and back into civilian life receive mental health care for a year. All active-duty and reserve servicemembers are required to have an annual mental health assessment, thanks to Donnelly’s Jacob Sexton Military Suicide Prevention Act, which has now been fully implemented.
Donnelly said, “As we continue working to prevent military and veteran suicide, I applaud President Trump’s order today to guarantee a full year of VA mental health care for servicemembers as they exit the military. The transition back to civilian life can be a difficult time, and this is a positive step forward in ensuring that these American heroes have the services and support they deserve.”
One of Donnelly’s top priorities as U.S. Senator is to prevent military suicides and improve mental health care for servicemembers. Since joining the Senate in 2013, Donnelly has worked non-stop to find bipartisan solutions to combat military suicide and make sure we take better care of our servicemembers and their families. Through his role on the Senate Armed Services Committee, he has successfully advanced commonsense, bipartisan legislation. In his first four years in the Senate, Donnelly authored and successfully enacted four military mental health reform efforts. In November 2017, Donnelly joined with the Indiana National Guard to discuss the implementation of the Sexton Act and its role in preventing military suicide.