Assembly passes bill designed to reduce veteran suicide

The State Assembly unanimously passes Devon Mathis’ Assembly Bill 988, which requires suicide crisis lines to provide the state with data on active or former military personnel use

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – Assemblyman Devon Mathis’ bill that will help gather data to help reduce veteran suicide will move to the senate for approval.

On April 17, the  California State Assembly passed Assembly Bill (AB) 988, a bill requiring mental health crisis providers to report on the number of veterans or active-duty personnel who utilize the service. Assemblyman Devon Mathis (R-Visalia) issued a statement upon the passage of AB 988 expressing his gratitude to his colleagues for unanimously supporting the bill. The bill will help the state better aid veterans who are contemplating suicide. The bill will now make its way to the senate for approval.

“I am glad that the Assembly has put partisanship aside and come together to support our heroes,” Mathis said in the statement. “I hope that the Senate immediately passes my bill so our state can quickly start assisting our veterans in need.”

According to his statement, AB 988 would provide the state with more data on how many veteran’s use the 988 suicide hotline. It will require suicide crisis lines to give an annual report on the number of active or former military personnel who utilize their services. He said over 22 veterans commit suicide each and everyday.

“Our country has failed to protect the very heroes who were ready to sacrifice their lives to ensure our freedom,” Mathis said in the statement.

Mathis thanked Assemblymembers Buffy Wicks (D), Diane Dixon (R), Eduardo Garcia (D), Juan Alanis (R), Laurie Davies (R), Philip Y. Ting (D), and Tina McKinnor (D) for co-authoring this bill.

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