Senator pushes to expand veteran mental health care - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Senator pushes to expand veteran mental health care

Posted: Updated:
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (WFSB) Sen. Richard Blumenthal (WFSB)

A Connecticut lawmaker wants to expand a mental health program for veterans.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal said he’ll be drafting legislation following a meeting on Monday.

He said he’ll be meeting with veteran peer specialists and mental health professionals to hear first-person accounts of their life-saving mental health program that pairs veterans with trained veteran peers to help promote and guide their recovery.

He’ll also hear from experts leading Connecticut’s program as he drafts legislation to expand the use of that model.

“Vets helping vets, peer to peer, can be pivotal to treating post-traumatic stress and other mental health issues, and my legislation will expand promising programs like Connnecticut's,” Blumenthal said. “This simple but stunningly successful program shows how veterans can help each other battle out of the black hole of post-traumatic stress and depression, and other invisible wounds of war.”

Blumenthal also said that pear specialists can give critical support and guidance, particularly in moments of crisis.

He said peer programs should be a key component in comprehensive efforts to provide more mental health care to veterans and all Americans.

“My legislation seeks to assure veterans that every asset is deployed in the fight to address post-traumatic stress and mental health,” Blumenthal said.

His meeting is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at the Errera Community Care Center in West Haven.

Copyright 2015 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.