By C. Todd LopezJanuary 15, 2010
WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Jan. 15, 2010) -- Statistics for December suicides in the Army were released today, and show as many as 10 potential suicides amongst active-duty Soldiers.
The December numbers bring total active-duty Army suicides for 2009 to a potential 160, up from 140 in 2008 -- a 14-percent increase. But for now, 46 of last year's potential suicides are still under investigation.
Increases in Soldier suicides have driven efforts in the Army to get a handle on why suicides are occurring and how they can be stopped.
During the 2010 Department of Defense/Veterans Administration Suicide Prevention Conference in Washington, D.C., Walter Morales, the Army suicide prevention program manager, said during 2009 the Army's greatest effort was in getting various service organizations to work together toward the shared goal of combating suicide.
"I think the most important thing that we have done for the entire Army is to synchronize our efforts," he said "There's a lot of people doing a lot of great things all over the place, but the mere fact that we said: let's have a group of experts at Army level to synchronize and integrate every single service policy and program out there, I think has paid great dividends."