President Trump and the U.S Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced on Wednesday the release of the President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End a National Tragedy of Suicide (PREVENTS). This is a nationwide plan aimed at raising public awareness about mental health, connecting Veterans and others at risk of suicide to federal and local resources, and facilitating focused and coordinated suicide prevention. It also promotes the safe storage of weapons, while not calling for firearm restrictions.

PREVENTS is the result of an Executive Order President Trump signed back in March 2019, calling for the VA, the DOD, Health and Human Services, and others to develop a strategy for ending the national suicide rate.

Recent data shows that 132 Americans, including 20 service members and Veterans, die by suicide each day.

“Veteran suicide is a tragedy this country started measuring in the decades following the Civil War, but one that sadly went unaddressed for generations,” said President Trump. 

“Today, my administration is taking steps to ensure the men and women who bravely fought for us when they were called will be given the care and attention they need during some of their darkest hours. Our Veterans will lead the way for all Americans as we end the stigma that for too long has kept us from talking openly about mental health and thwarted our efforts to provide the kind of assistance and support that will save lives.”

Veterans Affairs Secretary, Robert Wilkie, led a task force that penned a report to support veterans’ mental health and find an end to suicide. 

“Suicide prevention is VA’s highest clinical priority, and the department is taking significant steps to address the issue,” Wilkie said.

“But just as there is no single cause of suicide, no single organization can end Veteran suicide alone. That’s why PREVENTS aims to bring together stakeholders across all levels of government and in the private sector to work side by side to provide our Veterans with the mental health and suicide prevention services they need,” he added. “By employing a public-health approach to suicide prevention, President Trump’s roadmap will equip communities to help Veterans get the right care, whenever and wherever they need it.”