Congressman Tim Ryan Hosts Roundtable on Innovative Ways to Help Veterans

Washington, DC - Congressman Tim Ryan hosted a roundtable conversation yesterday with leaders of top veteran organizations in the United States. The goal of this meeting was to discuss the most pressing issues facing our veteran community, explore possible opportunities for collaboration, and find productive ways address these issues.

“As co-chairman of the Military Mental Health Caucus I was pleased to have the opportunity to address important veterans’ issues, such as Post-Traumatic Stress and suicide,” said Congressman Ryan. “For the first time in over a decade active duty suicides exceed combat deaths, and estimates show that veteran suicides may be as high as four times the non-veteran population. It goes without saying that there is a moral imperative to address these issues, but there are also compelling economic reasons. A recent report found the lifetime cost of treating PTSD in a single veteran is $1.4 million. With an estimated 500,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans with PTSD, the total cost of treatment could exceed $700 billion. The magnitude of these problems demand that we pursue innovative solutions outside of the normal processes.”

Organizations in attendance included: Garry Augustine, Executive Director of Disabled American Veterans; Barbara Van Dahlen, President of Give an Hour; Louis J. Celli, Jr., National Legislative Director, American Legion; Ray Kelley, National Legislative Director of Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, Nancy McGrory Richardson, Market Development Director of AMVETS; Alex Nicholson, Legislative Director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America; and Aaron Scheinberg, Director of Strategy and Research of The Mission Continues.