What ultimately happens to the thousands of American combat veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other readjustment challenges will be the responsibility of all of us acting as a community.
Even if the VA had unlimited resources, research indicates that 60% of returning troops who recognize they have issues, will not seek help because of the stigma they feel society has towards PTSD. They will return home and live and work with us, as friends and colleagues. And how our society–our community–reacts to this challenge by either reinforcing the stigma or debunking it, will impact the gravity of this issue. So far history points to a tragic outcome with multigenerational consequences, unless we can become more enlightened.
This Thursday evening, May 10th, there will be a community event that will begin this process. More below…
Author Ilona Meagher has written a book, “Moving a Nation to Care” about the challenge we as a community will be dealing with for generations to come. Some DailyKos readers may have read Ilona’s work and she also maintains a comprehensive blog on all issues related to the physical and mental health of our soldiers and veterans.
The event, to be held this Thursday, May 10 at 7:30 pm at the Back Pages Book store in Waltham (368 Moody St.), will be the launch of her national book tour. But, as Ilona writes this is a community event that “will be a shared discussion and learning experience” for us to learn about the challenges and develop grassroots solutions to help our neighbors.