November 02, 2021

Chairman Takano Applauds President Biden’s Comprehensive Strategy to Address Veteran Suicide

Press Contact

Jenni Geurink (202-819-4684)   

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Mark Takano (CA-41) released the following statement after President Joe Biden released a new White House framework to address veteran suicide entitled, “Reducing Military and Veteran Suicide: Advancing a Comprehensive, Cross-Sector, Evidence-Informed Approach.”


“Today the Biden-Harris Administration further proved its commitment to supporting our nation’s veterans with a new White House strategy to combat military and veteran suicide. When I first became Chairman of this Committee, I made addressing the crisis of veteran suicide my top priority and adopted a comprehensive public health approach to guide our efforts. I am so pleased to see the White House adopt that same framework and specifically call out the need to create time and space between a veteran in crisis and their access to lethal means.


“Our Committee has legislation ready to advance each of the five White House priorities. We can expand critical lethal means safety training for all VA employees and community providers who interact with veterans by passing Rep. Underwood’s Lethal Means Safety Training Act—one policy that we know will save lives. By fully enacting my previously passed Veterans’ COMPACT Act provision, VA can provide or pay for emergency suicide stabilization care at no cost to the veteran. We can address upstream factors that may lead a veteran into crisis in the first place by passing our bills to strengthen employment, education, housing, food security, and access to high-quality healthcare, including mental health care. We can ensure community care providers are trained in key military cultural competency by passing Rep. Blunt Rochester’s Veterans' Culturally Competent Care Act. Additionally, we can equip VA with all the tools it needs to continue its world renowned research by passing my and Ranking Member Bost’s VIPER Act.


“Today’s announcement makes it clear that President Biden is committed to backing up his priorities with action, and I look forward to working with the Administration to pass many of these proposals in our upcoming mental health legislative package. As long as even one veteran dies by suicide each day, our work will not be finished.”