Suicides among active-duty U.S. military service members have increased by as much as 20% during the coronavirus pandemic, according to reports.
While the data is incomplete, Army and Air Force officials said they believe the isolation and uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic is adding stress to an already strained force. Senior Army leaders have seen a roughly 30% jump in active duty suicides this year, or 114 suicides this year compared to 88 at the same time last year.
The first three months of 2020 actually saw a decrease in self-inflicted violent behavior and murders, according to Newsweek.
The Pentagon has yet to provide 2020 data, but Army officials said discussions in Defense Department briefings indicate that there has been up to a 20% jump in overall military suicides.
“I can’t say scientifically, but what I can say is—I can read a chart and a graph, and the numbers have gone up in behavioral health-related issues,” Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said in an Associated Press interview published Sunday. (Read more from “Active-Duty Suicides up 20% During COVID-19 Pandemic” HERE)