G-1, Human Resources Policy Directorate
Supporting Soldiers, Families & Civilians – Active, Guard, Reserve and Retired
3 September 2008
How could you have prepared your troops such that they do not experience excessive anxiety about deploying? (use BATTLEMIND, create an environment that fosters help-seeking; eliminate policies and procedures which inadvertently punish soldiers for seeking assistance; assume responsibility for the mental health of your Soldiers; monitor Soldier access to needed services).
What resources are available to you to help prepare your unit? (Community Mental Health Service, Brigade mental health assets, medics, your chain-of-command; combat stress control; chaplains, your NCO’s and junior officers).
What conditions would have to exist for YOU to seek services through the Community Mental Health Service. Do those conditions exist for your Soldiers? (For discussion).
How do you encourage Soldiers to appropriately seek mental health services, and how do you reduce any stigma regarding the use of such services? (counseling from the top down; education regarding mental health services; creating realistic attitudes about services; creating a supportive atmosphere in which Soldiers know they can express their problems and seek help without negative consequences).
You have been told your suicide rate is unacceptable. How do you go about reducing suicides in your unit? (know your Soldiers and have squad and platoon leaders know their Soldiers; solicit feedback from your Soldiers regarding their stressors; create a supportive environment where Soldiers feel comfortable talking with their leaders about the problems they are experiencing; training regarding the identification of individuals who may be at risk; consult with your mental health resources; emphasis on the buddy system; early intervention).
Scenario #1 – Pre-deployment
STRATEGIC QUESTIONS and ANSWERS: