The Quiet Struggle of Veterans

Who is quietly struggling, or sinking, among your teams — and as a ethics and compliance leader, what are you going to do about it?

This LinkedIn post, penned and shared by our teammate Amy McDougal gave us fresh insight into the unabated pain of many in our midst — veterans and others — who already sacrificed for the greater good and now suffer in silence for it.

Many organizations boast of core values like “Teamwork,” “Friendship,” “Compassion,” and “Inclusion.” Amy’s post should remind us to apply those values to the vets on our team, and challenge ourselves to action.

Speaking up for Veterans

In February of 2023, McDougal posted:

Help me make sense of this? Members of our Armed Forces volunteer to serve, willingly accepting the risk of the ultimate sacrifice in service to our Nation. Yet, our federal government is still failing to explore, research, and aggressively pursue *every therapeutic option* to bring them comfort from the physical and mental consequences of their service.

Some are ordered to run burn pits, some are sexually assaulted, some are exposed to other toxins such as jet fuel, others carry back-breaking ruck sacks for years, or bear the grief of a fallen wingman or battle buddy, but the Department of Veterans Affairs cannot prescribe them cannabis or psychedelics for relief from the devastating aftermath of their service. The military veterans suicide rate is no mystery – our veterans are suffering, and they need relief. Ibuprofen and Oxy are clearly not the answers. In the absence of effective options, many “self-medicate” with alcohol, abuse illicit or prescription medications, or they decide they just cannot continue suffering, and they tragically end their lives.

Veterans answered the Nation’s call – now we need you to speak up for us: in our communities, workplaces, social media, and at the polls. If we do not take proper care of our military members, veterans, and their families, we will not be able to recruit and retain future generations to defend our Nation and our Freedoms.

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