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Goal: 30,000 Progress: 13,252
Sponsored by: The Veterans Site

Combat PTSD.

You've seen those words before, on news tickers, in Hollywood films, on trending tabs, even on the covers of scientific journals. You've been seeing those words for years now, haven't you?

What you may not have seen, or heard, is that Combat PTSD is the leading contributor to a staggering number: twenty-two. Twenty-two. According to a study conducted by Veterans Affairs in 2013, twenty-two United States veterans commit suicide every day.

Since the 2013 study, no study has found the suicide rate to be declining. Which means that we aren't doing a good enough job for our veterans. To combat this trend, the VA needs to change and improve. Quite simply, the programs currently offered by the VA-- including medication, psychotherapy and group therapy-- are not what every veteran currently needs. There cannot be a one-size-fits-all model to treat Combat PTSD.

Combat PTSD is both a psychological and physiological condition. The stress put on the sufferer's brain actually changes its physical landscape, including a 5-10% decrease in gray matter, the part of the brain responsible for relaying neurological messages to and from the body. Also affected are the hippocampus (short-term memory) and the prefrontal cortex (emotional response).

What if there were ways to not only repair what has been lost, but ways that our veterans could find peace? What if, instead of a telephone hotline and a refillable orange bottle, there were programs that granted them access to garden spaces, and to the arts, and to exercise therapy like yoga or running? What if there was a way to save veterans' lives?

Sign the petition below to tell Secretary of Veteran Affairs to explore other options to treat Combat PTSD.

Sign Here

Dear Secretary of Veteran Affairs,

According to a study conducted by Veterans Affairs in 2013, twenty-two United States veterans commit suicide every day. Twenty-two. Considering that there are now more programs for suffering veterans than there ever have been, it's hard to believe that Combat PTSD is still the leading factor that drives veterans to suicide. Together, we need to make a change. We should start with where the most veterans go for help: the VA.

The problem is not that the VA doesn't offer help; the problem is that the programs currently offered by the VA are not what every veteran needs. The VA's programs that address Combat PTSD – including medication, psychotherapy and group therapy– may work for some returning service members. For others, though, the current model just doesn't work.

Some veterans instead need something like Yoga Warriors International, who has had success in 'retraining the fight-or-flight response' so that when confronting a situation that triggers their memories, they’re able to remain calm.

Others may need the physical act of running, which a study done at Cambridge University reported to grow gray matter, a crucial part of the brain that can sometimes decrease with the onset of Combat PTSD.

Some veterans may need the catharsis that can come from writing, painting, or playing a piece of music. Others may need something like Veterans Healing Farm, where veterans escape the noisy world and are allowed to put their hands in the soil they fought so hard to defend.

Having the VA act as a bridge to these programs would be beneficial, but think about if the VA offered these programs. Veterans could be excited to go to the VA. Veterans could excited to go to therapy. Peace could be found. Pride could be restored. Progress toward having that 'twenty-two' become “zero” could be jumpstarted by the VA’s efforts to revitalize the offered programs to treat Combat PTSD.

Thank you.


Petition Signatures

May 23, 2017 Carol Morris
May 22, 2017 wendy carson
May 22, 2017 Kristin Sullivan
May 20, 2017 Sherrie Collins
May 20, 2017 choky alvarez
May 20, 2017 Shirley Troia
May 18, 2017 Carey Mayfield
May 18, 2017 Clive Woodruff
May 18, 2017 Art Bensen
May 18, 2017 Linda Cenci
May 18, 2017 Amber Dudkowski
May 18, 2017 Steven Schueller
May 18, 2017 Victor Glock
May 18, 2017 Jennifer Elthorp
May 18, 2017 Barbara Dreisbach-Towle
May 18, 2017 Gordon Levy
May 18, 2017 (Name not displayed)
May 18, 2017 Wendy Cohoe
May 17, 2017 jane cook
May 12, 2017 Becky Anderson
May 12, 2017 JoAnn Dunn
May 12, 2017 Christine Elie-Wanamaker
May 11, 2017 K G
May 10, 2017 (Name not displayed)
May 7, 2017 Maria Mendez Diaz
May 5, 2017 Rebecca Pois If we have money to send them to war and harms way, than we should have money to invest in their return.
May 5, 2017 Deborah Tebet
May 5, 2017 Jane Harrison
May 5, 2017 Ruth Braithwaite
May 5, 2017 ethel Pounds We must take care of those who fought for our freedom and the freedom of those so oppressed. also for our Senior Citizens
May 5, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 25, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 24, 2017 Karen Supplee Our veterans deserve the very best from our government & it's people. Shelter animals also can offer love & having someone to care for with help both.
Apr 24, 2017 Carolyn Turner
Apr 24, 2017 MP Hillman
Apr 23, 2017 Margarita Politte
Apr 22, 2017 Heidi groom
Apr 22, 2017 Margaret Paddock There is no excuse for our veterans to not receive the healthcare they were promised. The VA has been in existence for too long not to have these programs in place.
Apr 21, 2017 Vivian Nicely
Apr 21, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 21, 2017 Michael Garrett
Apr 21, 2017 Melora Jackson
Apr 20, 2017 Catherine Thompson
Apr 19, 2017 Richard Laba
Apr 19, 2017 amanda curry
Apr 17, 2017 Jennifer Petersen
Apr 16, 2017 Stephen Moyer
Apr 16, 2017 Barbara Hauck
Apr 13, 2017 (Name not displayed)

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