The Ministry of Defence is to start recording the number of suicides among military veterans.
Tobias Ellwood – The Defence Minister
Tobias Ellwood said the move was crucial for the government to ‘better’ understand’ the toll of of modern conflict on ex-service men and women.
He went on to add; “I want former soldiers to be shown the kind of public gratitude that is commonplace in America. Lets hear the announcement on boarding an aircraft to invite veterans to step up and board first as an act of gratitude for their service.”
Tobias Ellwood was a captain in the Royal Green Jackets and whose uncle, an army veteran, killed himself after suffering from depression.
“Military officers,” he said, “are now responsible for speaking out if they believe anyone under their command is suffering from mental health problems. By comparison, in my days in the 1990s, you were expected to grab a man suit.”
The MoD’s latest data says that 194 service men and women killed themselves between 2003 and 2018. But others feel that the number is very much higher.
Coroners decisions recording suicide or open verdicts on Veterans who have taken their own lives will be forwarded to the MoD, which will then check the names against its own service records.