On Veterans Day, the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute honors the men and women who have served our country. One of our core missions is to honor their service and sacrifice by helping ensure that Texas veterans and their families receive the mental health care they were promised.
This year, mental health care is more important than ever. In June, the Meadows Institute and the Cohen Veterans Network (CVN) issued a report indicating that for every 5% increase in the national unemployment rate, as many as 550 additional U.S. veterans could be lost to suicide every year, and 20,000 more veterans could suffer from substance use disorder, compared to pre-COVID levels.
Texas has shown time and again its dedication to our veterans. Through the creation of innovative programs like the Texas Veterans + Family Alliance (TV+FA), which matches local and private investments with state funds to expand the availability of, access to, and enhance delivery of mental health services and treatments. First initiated six years ago this month, the program has already provided $57 million in state funding across 114 grants and collaboratives, serving more than 67,000 veterans and family members.
We owe it to our veterans and their families to not only continue these programs, but to work harder than ever to address the gaps and build a community of support. Together, we can improve the mental health, and quality of life, of Texas veterans and their families.
If you or someone you know is in crisis or in need of support, contact:
- Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-TALK (8255), Option 1
- Veterans Crisis Text: Text “HELP” to 838255
- For more crisis resources, visit: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net
- For mental health support, visit: https://www.cohenveteransnetwork.org
- For peer support call Vets4Warriors: 1-855-838-8255
- National Women Veterans Hotline: 1-855-829-6636