I don’t want to write about suicide
I don’t want the image of her
Clinging onto a chain link fence
Chef’s knife in hand
Chef’s knife inside of her
Looking through the chain link
At kids playing in the park
She mourned the loss of her son
She could not contain her grief
She could not hold on
She had other children
They no longer had a mother
My father no longer had a cousin
I no longer had a cousin once removed
When I was 18
I, too, wanted to kill myself
I thought the world
Better off without me
Better off without me
The emotional pain
A living hell
But I didn’t kill myself
I sought help
I got help
But I was not a mother
Grieving the loss of her son
- Taking a minute can change a life
- No one has to have all the answers
- Resources are available
- Finally, if there is anyone you are concerned about, take a minute to check in with them. It could change their life.
The Clay Hunt SAV Act Passed! Thank Your Members of Congress!
Thank you for your mental health advocacy! Thank you for contacting your Senators and Congressmen to make your voice heard. Thank you for your support of suicide prevention for our military and veterans community.
Your phone calls, emails and tweets helped to pass the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act unanimously through both the Senate and the House. The bill is now on its way to be signed by President Obama.
Among other things the Clay Hunt SAV Act requires an annual assessment of mental health care and suicide prevention programs at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and implements a pilot loan forgiveness program for psychiatrists that agree to serve in the VA.
Now, please pass the thanks along to your Senators and Congressmen.
Support our wounded warriors. Support the The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act. Call your Senators today. Thank you.
To learn more about the life and death of Clay Hunt, watch this 60 Minutes episode in honor of him (transcript of video included): The life and death of Clay Hunt – CBS News
This is the story of one: Clay Hunt from Houston, Texas, a Marine veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. After four years of a downward spiral, he took his own life in 2011. You’ll see him in videos during some of his best times and hear him talk about some of his worst. Hunt loved being a Marine and serving his country and though he had been out of the Corps for two years when he died, Clay Hunt was a casualty of war.
via The life and death of Clay Hunt – CBS News.
Here is NAMI‘s call for action which I received by email today.
Tell Your Senators To Support Suicide Prevention For Our Nation’s Military and Veterans
In one of the first actions in the new Congress, the House passed HR 203, The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act. This legislation requires annual assessment of mental health care and suicide prevention programs at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and implements a pilot loan forgiveness program for psychiatrists that agree to serve in the VA. The bill passed unanimously – demonstrating the strong bipartisan support for addressing gaps in mental health and suicid e prevention programs at the VA.
NAMI strongly supports the Clay Hunt SAV Act.
We are asking you to keep this momentum going by calling your Senators today. Tell them how important this bill is to the mental health care system for our country’s military and veterans.
Click on the link below and fill out your information. Your Senators’ phone numbers will appear along with talking points. Our nation’s military and veterans have protected us for decades; it’s time we help protect them.
Received this call to action from NAMI yesterday:
Help Support Suicide Prevention for Our Military and Veteran Heroes
“This is an opportunity for the NAMI community to make a difference for the 22 veterans who die by suicide every single day,” Daniel Williams, Chair, NAMI Veterans and Military Council.
Please contact your United States Senators and Representative and urge them to support the passage of The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act (H.R. 5059)! Lawmakers will vote on this bill this week and we owe it to our military and veteran heroes to ensure that it passes.
What is Included in the Bill?
The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act, or simply the “Clay Hunt SAV Act” will:
- Increase access to mental health care.
- Boost capacity to meet mental health care demand.
- Improve the quality of care for troops and veterans.
- Provide seamless care from the Department of Defense to VA.
- Develop community support for veterans nationwide.
What Can You Do To Help?
The Clay Hunt SAV Act has strong bipartisan support, but we need you to contact Congress TODAY to ensure that our military and veterans receive the support they deserve.