Wounded Warrior Project Shares Suicide Prevention Strategies at AAS24 Conference

Experts offer insights on suicide risks among Gen Z veterans, training in military competency, and models for crisis support.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., May 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — One of the largest veterans nonprofits shares suicide risk reduction strategies at one of the leading conferences on suicide prevention this week. Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) will offer insights applicable to veterans and others at risk.

The Department of Veteran Affairs national suicide report shows veterans continue to experience suicide loss at a rate nearly 72% higher than non-veteran U.S. adults, even when adjusted for age and sex.

“Wounded Warrior Project is grateful to the American Association of Suicidology (AAS) for putting a spotlight on the needs of the military community at their conference,” said Jennifer Silva, chief program officer at WWP. “We are grateful for the opportunity to share best practices and insights and remain committed to addressing the full spectrum of suicide risk factors among the warriors and families we serve.”

Acknowledging Gen Z’s High Suicide Risk

Suicide is currently the second leading cause of death for Gen Z Americans, ages 10–24, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Close to 40% of young warriors, ages 18-24, surveyed* by WWP had suicidal thoughts in the past year. This marked the highest prevalence of recent suicidal thoughts across any age range surveyed by WWP.

“It’s a topic at the center of my life,” said Dan Miller, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who will deliver a keynote address at AAS24 titled Lessons For My Son: Helping the Next Generation of Suicide Survivors.

“Suicide nearly ended my life, continues to claim the lives of my friends, and looms over my young son and his peers who are currently serving in the military. I’m grateful for the opportunity to share the wisdom I offer him on how to forge a path out of darkness,” said Miller.

Pioneering Better Suicide Prevention

“Exposure to suicide can increase risk even if the crisis did not result in a death. A well-rounded approach to reducing suicide needs to include resources to support and care for someone after exposure to a suicide loss or crisis,” said Lyndsay Tkach, director of Mental and Brain Health Services at WWP. She oversees suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention efforts for more than 250,000 registered warriors and family members.

Tkach and her team lead efforts to streamline suicide prevention and response strategies at WWP. They also facilitate suicide prevention training for veterans, WWP staff, and community partners empowering individuals to play an active role in suicide prevention regardless of clinical background or experience.  

Tkach will share evidence-based practices in a workshop titled Tackling High Suicide Risk in the Post-9/11 Military Population. Her team will also offer a training workshop titled Military Competency: Nuances of Interacting with Active Duty, Veterans, and Their Families.

AAS24 takes place May 5-10 in Las Vegas during May’s Mental Health Awareness Month. Learn more about military mental wellness and resources offered by WWP.

*Source: 2022 Annual Warrior Survey, conducted between June 15 and Aug. 24, 2022.

About Wounded Warrior Project

Since 2003, Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) has been meeting the growing needs of warriors, their families, and caregivers — helping them achieve their highest ambition. Learn more about WWP.

SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project

Wounded Warrior Project(R)

Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/wounded-warrior-project-shares-suicide-prevention-strategies-at-aas24-conference-302128661.html
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