Midstate leaders hold veterans’ mental health roundtable

Carlisle/West Shore

CAMP HILL, Pa. (WHTM) — State leaders believe there have been strides regarding veterans’ mental health services, but there is a long way to go.

Sen. Mike Regan, the Department of Human Services, and the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs organized the roundtable discussion Friday in Camp Hill.

The goal was to brainstorm solutions and potential policy changes. The event followed Governor Tom Wolf’s announcement of Reach Out PA: a multi-agency initiative that aims to make mental health services more accessible.

Pennsylvania’s Adjutant General says while waitlists for veteran’s service appointments were a nightmare years ago, they are handled much better now.

He believes there still needs to be an increase in awareness regarding those programs and veterans need to be better connected to available resources.

“A lot of our cases in the military families are more compounded and we see a higher rater of incidents of homelessness, of unemployment, of suicide, of mental health or addiction problems,” major general Anthony Carrelli said.

Carrelli says many people have fallen through the cracks and may not have certain benefits due to how they were discharged. He says stakeholders need to work collaboratively to find ways to ensure they get mental health care too.

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