Fort Carson Suicide Rate Down By More Than A Third

To join the conversation on this story and others, "like" our KKTV 11 News Facebook page!

Army officials say Fort Carson's suicide rate fell by more than a third last year.

Fort Carson's acting commander, Brig. Gen. James Doty, said Wednesday the post's suicide rate was 31 per 100,000 in 2010, down from 49 per 100,000 in 2009.

In 2008, Fort Carson's rate was 66 per 100,000.

Doty says it's difficult to pinpoint the reasons for the decline but says one factor appears to be Fort Carson's practice of placing behavioral health teams closer to soldiers instead of clustering them all at the post hospital.

He says that makes it easier for soldiers to seek help and reduces some of the stigma attached to visiting the mental health section of the hospital.

In the military overall, suicides among active duty soldiers showed a slight drop in 2010 after five years of record increases.

Not all areas of the military saw their suicide rates drop: the Air Force was the only branch of the military to not see declines in suicides for its active duty soldiers. The number of suicides in the Army National Guard and Reserve actually doubled in 2010 from its previous 2009 rate. The big increase in suicides involved soldiers who were not on active duty at the time.

Lt. Gen. Jack Stultz, chief of the Army Reserve, said that geography created unique issues for reservists versus active duty soldiers. Many reservists are assigned to Reserve units outside of the city or state they reside in and typically go a month between drill weekends, making it difficult for the unit to keep tabs on the troubled soldiers. Not living on or near a base can also make access to behavioral health teams more of a challenge for soldiers.

Stultz said that leaders are looking for more ways for commanders to keep contact with members of their Reserve units during the bulk of the month.

KKTV firmly believes in freedom of speech for all and we are happy to provide this forum for the community to share opinions and facts. We ask that commenters keep it clean, keep it truthful, stay on topic and be responsible. Comments left here do not necessarily represent the viewpoint of KKTV 11 News.

If you believe that any of the comments on our site are inappropriate or offensive, please tell us by clicking “Report Abuse” and answering the questions that follow. We will review any reported comments promptly.

powered by Disqus
KKTV 520 E. Colorado Colorado Springs, CO 80903 Office: (719) 634-2844 Fax: (719) 632-0808 News Fax: (719) 634-3741
Copyright © 2002-2016 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 114220344 -
Gray Television, Inc.