The El Paso VA Suicide Prevention Campaign has begun in honor of National Suicide Prevention Month.

Approximately 20 veterans commit suicide every day, and of these, 20,14 did not use VA Healthcare services. This year, a 33,000 square foot VA Wellness Center will open and it will be dedicated to providing expanded mental health care for veterans. The facility is being built separately from the main VA so that veterans will feel less stigmatized when they reach out for mental health assistance, and hopefully that will lead to fewer veteran suicides.

An outreach table will be located in the El Paso VA Main Atrium on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 08:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. throughout the month of September that will be staffed with counselors to answer any questions from veterans. There will also be brochures about treatment options as well as suicide prevention available. There will also be Veterans Crisis Line information including wrist bands, dog tags, koozies, bandanas, wallet cards, coasters, stress balls, and free gun locks available during those times.

You can also take advantage of these events. Each even is open to the public unless otherwise specified:

Date: September 10, 2019
Event: Veteran Suicide Awareness Ceremony
Location: EPCC Valle Verde Campus (Cafeteria Annex) – 919 Hunter Dr.
Times: 11:00AM – 1:00PM

Date: September 11, 2019
Event: September 11th Remembrance and Commemoration
Location: Old Glory Memorial Flag side– 9550 Gateway North
Times: 8:00AM – 9:30AM

Date: September 12, 2019
Event: Mental Health Summit
Location: EPCC Administrative Services Center– 9050 Viscount Blvd.
Times: 8:30AM – 3:00PM
Audience: open to community agencies

Date: September 12, 2019
Event: Peer Support Group (risk vs. protective factor breakdown and discussion)
Location: La Tuna Prison- 8500 Doniphan Rd.
Times: 1:00PM – 3:30PM
Audience: La Tuna Veteran Inmates

Date: September 13, 2019
Event: Homeless Veteran Stand Down
Location: Armed Forces Reserve Center– 11701 Montana Ave.
Times: 8:00AM – 3:00PM
Audience: Homeless Veteran population

Date: September 19, 2019
Event: Peer Support Group (importance of coping strategies and discussion)
Location: La Tuna Prison-8500 Doniphan Rd.
Times: 1:00PM – 3:30PM
Audience: La Tuna Veteran Inmates

Date: September 20, 2019
Event: Second Chance Job and Resource Fair
Location: Las Cruces Vista College Computer Career Center– 850 N.Telshor
Times: 9:00AM – 12:00PM
Audience: Individuals who have been incarcerated

Date: September 26, 2019
Event: Peer Support Group (scenario discussion and questions)
Location: La Tuna Prison- 8500 Doniphan Rd.
Times: 1:00PM – 3:30PM
Audience: La Tuna Veteran Inmates

If you have any questions about the events, contact Nydia Avitia, Suicide Prevention Coordinator at 564-6100 ext. 5084. You can R.S.V.P with Ginette Bocanegra, Public Affairs Officer at 915-564-6100 ext. 7027 at least three working days prior to event.