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Louisiana Department of Veteran Affairs to host virtual suicide prevention summit

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Posted at 10:08 AM, Sep 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-10 11:08:34-04

The Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs will host its Third Annual Suicide Prevention Summit virtually on Friday, September 18.

The summit begins at 9:00 a.m.

LDVA says that September is recognized as Suicide Prevention Awareness Month across the country.

A proclamation was issued by Governor John Bel Edwards to highlight the efforts of LDVA to prevent suicide among service members, veterans and their families.

Guest speakers at this year's summit event include:

  • Aimee Johnson, LCSWProgram Analyst, VHA Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
  • Jennifer True, Ph. D.Investigator, South Central Mental Illness, Research, Education and Clinical Center
  • Dawn Schiro, LSCW-BACS, MSWSuicide Prevention Social WorkerSoutheast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System
  • Matt Bailey Veteran Champion, VISION Project

Speakers are expected to address safe firearm storage, safety planning as an effective form of intervention for suicide prevention and preventing suicide by firearms or other lethal means, LDVA says.

The department adds that the summit is open not only to veterans and service members, but to anyone who would like to learn more about suicide prevention and how to help.

Registration is open for individuals, here.

Additionally, LDVA includes training on suicide prevention in its annual training for LDVA Veterans Assistance Counselors who staff more than 70 veterans’ benefits offices around the state. These service officers interact with Louisiana veterans on a daily basis. LDVA’s initiatives complement both the USDVA’s efforts and the mission of the President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End a National Tragedy of Suicide (PREVENTS).

For more information about the Summit or LDVA, visit vetaffairs.la.gov, email veteran@la.gov, call 225-219-5000.

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