Army Reservists Learn Suicide First Aid
December 5, 2013
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- The United States Army has been embroiled in a battle against Suicide that has extended for more than six years as the reported numbers have continued to climb annually. In an effort to reinforce the already hearty efforts of the Army and Army Reserve, the Ready and Resilient Campaign (R2C) Team from the 81st Regional Support Command at Ft Jackson spent two full days (November 20-21) providing Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) to 20 members of the 98th Division at the Boyden Arbor Reserve Center. These Soldiers, of all ranks, engaged in multiple sessions of exploration and group discussion about suicide and spent nearly six hours in role playing exercises designed to test and validate the intervention skills they would gain. The R2C Team from the 81st RSC consisting of Mr. Kent McMillian, the Drug Demand Reduction Program Manager, Mr. Thomas M. White, The Sexual Harassment& Assault Response Program Manager, Master Sgt. Mary Butler, HHC 81st RSC, and Mr. Aljournal Franklin, the Suicide Prevention Program Manager utilized the Living Works ASIST curriculum to provide in depth and impactful training that increased the level of concern shown for those Soldiers and Civilians that may be considering Suicide as an option in dealing with their problems, as well as taught basic Suicide First Aid techniques that enhanced the confidence to act. The Soldiers expressed excitement about the prospect of being able to intervene in this manner in the future. Some even remarked that this type of training is needed on a more regular basis and that it could easily help them save lives. The 81st R2C team will be providing more training throughout the Fort Jackson community as they seek to collaborate with commanders, chaplains, behavioral health workers and Soldiers during the upcoming year.
Overall, the 81st RSC and its R2C Team are working to be the pacesetters for the entire Fort Jackson community in the areas of Suicide Prevention and Resiliency.