Some of the most substantial wounds felt by servicemembers and their families are not visible to the naked eye, and a new report from the National Alliance on Mental Illness urges the government to do more to address the issue. The recently released report Parity for Patriots points to holes in mental healthcare coverage for soldiers and their families, The Miami Herald reports.
Mental health disorders affect about 20 percent of active duty soldiers, and while post-traumatic stress disorder is getting more attention recently, the organization says that children and family members can sometimes be overlooked. In particular, it points to statistics that show around one third of children of a deployed parent face psychological obstacles.
"Once the war is over, people tend to forget veterans' needs," Bob Carolla, director of media relations at the organization, told the newspaper. "We want to make sure ongoing mental health needs aren't forgotten."
While there are mental health services available to military families, the report says they can sometimes be difficult to navigate. Above all else, the report says the Pentagon should remove obstacles and provide more local care for soldiers and their loved ones.
On Thursday, the third annual PTSD Awareness Day event was held in Washington, D.C. The program featured speeches from vets affected by the disorder and aimed to bring attention to the condition, the Washington Post reports.