Army's Soaring Suicide Rates Linked to Risky Behavior
Friday, July 30, 2010
A disturbing report coming from the U.S. Army reveals a record number of suicides linked to an increase in risky behaviors like drug abuse, drunk driving, and crime.
The report shows that in 2009, one-third of all soldiers were taking prescription drugs like anti-depressants.
Sexual offenses have also tripled over the past seven years and domestic abuse is up 177-percent.
The Army said the rise in risky behavior is linked to the rising number soldier suicides.
Officials counted 160 suicides last year, the highest ever on record. In fact, more soldiers died last year from non-combat injuries than during war. The majority of those came from suicide, murder, and risky behavior.
"It's time for the Army to take a hard look at itself, to sit down and say, 'Okay, what are those things that came lower on our priority list that we need to reinstitute, reinforce, and start doing to get at this problem," Gen. Peter Chiarelli, Army Vice Chief of Staff, said.
Retired Army Maj. Gen. Bob Dees gave more insight about this report on the Friday, July 20 edition of Newswatch. To hear his comments, check Cbnnews.com after 5 p.m. ET, or check your local listings for show times.