‘Combatting’ self-harm and suicide in the US military and after: Culture, military labor and no-harm contracts
AffiliationUniversity of Chester
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AbstractTaylor and Reeves' chapter opens with the increasing concerns regarding the self-harm suicide rate amongst the veteran community across the USA. The author's highlight powerfully that this issue wrenches the attention beyond those veterans who have sustained mental injury from conflict alone. The issue's contemporary relevance is focused around the US military's proposal to draw up 'no harm contract' under a ‘Separation Oath’ model. The chapter provides an overview of the current situation facing US military veterans' engagement with health and welfare sectors. The authors assert the roots of stigma and the avoidance of help-seeking are operating at both formal and informal levels in the military, at the added expense of mental health crises experienced by those in non-combat roles, which are often carried out into their civilian lives. The chapter then critically examines the notion of the no harm contract suggestion- finding a distinct lack of evidence for their efficacy in reducing the potential for suicide and self-harm. The chapter closes with a critic of the adoption of Oaths on Exit as a therapeutic intervention.
CitationTaylor, P. & Reeves, A. (2019). ‘Combatting’ self-harm and suicide in the US military and after: Culture, military labor and no-harm contracts. In P. Taylor, K. Albertson & E. Murray (Eds.). Military past, civilian present: International perspectives on veterans' transition from the armed forces. New York, NY: Springer.
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