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ANG Suicide Analysis Board Urges Increased Gun Safety

The Air National Guard wants to rely more heavily on chaplains to help combat suicides, following a recent analysis that discovered easy access to guns and a lack of preventative information contributed to most ANG suicides in 2018. Ten of 12 ANG suicides that occurred from January to September 2018 were linked to guns, according to the first Suicide Analysis Board findings, which were presented July 11 during a training session for psychological health personnel at JB Andrews, Md. Hoping to identify trends that could help ANG leaders better combat suicide in their ranks, the board considered factors that preceded each airmen’s death, how they died, and what actions leaders took afterward. Current suicide prevention training is seen as “watered down,” according to the presentation, which noted “significant barriers to reporting mental health issues still exist.”