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Veteran Suicides Ridiculed by Manager of Veteran Affairs

In December of last year, a manager at the Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Indianapolis sent around an email to her employees that directly targeted the issue of veteran suicide. Unfortunately, the content of the email poked fun at this serious issue and made light of what has become a national problem.

The email depicted several different scenes of an elf. In one, the elf was pleading for Xanax, followed by a photo of the elf hanging itself because it was denied proper medication. The woman who sent the email manages the hospital's Seamless Transition Integrated Care Clinic. This clinic is responsible for helping returning veterans transition back into life stateside.

After the email was discovered, the hospital's public affairs department quickly issued a statement to The Indianapolis Star on behalf of the woman. She apologized for sending the email and expressed regret for any damage it may have caused. A spokeswoman for the hospital stated that the email is in no way a reflection of the care they offer to veterans.

Backlash Rises Throughout the Country

Although the issue was apparently "administratively addressed," the woman is still employed at the hospital. Many veterans groups and individuals are disturbed at the apparent lack of discipline and are crying that more should be done to hold the woman accountable.

The email could not have surfaced at a worse time, with an estimated 22 veterans committing suicide each day in the United States. One veteran's group commander called the email a slap in the face to veterans. Others spoke up, saying that the woman should face repercussions.

Various acts have been signed into existence directly combatting veteran suicide. Suicide prevention tactics and required annual mental health exams are products of acts like the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act and the Sexton Act.

At Smith Law Offices, LLC, we stand behind veterans struggling with mental health issues. Our goal is to provide veterans with the assistance they need while transitioning to life out of the service. If you are in need of legal counsel or representation, please don't hesitate to contact a Southern California veteran's law attorney from our firm today.