As part of 2019’s end-of-the-year funding vehicle, Congress appropriated $25 million for research into one of the most important crises affecting our country: veteran suicides by firearm. The funding allows research to keep moving forward.
Both statewide and nationally, guns are used in most veteran suicides—but for a while there was little research to explain definitively the high firearm suicide rate among veterans.
Now, Congress will have non-partisan research to have a better and more accurate picture of the crisis. Our representatives deserve praise for this bipartisan accomplishment. But this achievement would not have been possible without the signature of President Trump, who has made helping veterans a priority for his administration.
I thank the White House and Congress for working together in providing the funds needed to begin research into veteran suicides by firearm. This is an unsung triumph that could help stop many veteran suicides in the future. However, the funding is limited and once it runs out, research could come to a close. In order to sustain the momentum and attention around this issue, we should support Senator Joni Ernst in any effort that will keep research going. Like Senator Ernst, Iowa supports its patriots who served in uniform. We leave no veteran behind.
- Chase Holm
Staff Sergeant, US Army