Mental health struggles and suicide are challenges that affect us all including our military service members, Veterans, and their families. The State of Utah and the Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs are committed reducing suicide and improving mental health  

The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) have partnered to bring the Governor’s Challenge to Prevent Suicide Among Service Members, Veterans, and their Families (SMVF). Governor Spencer J. Cox accepted the challenge and Utah is proud to join this effort with community-based part of this effort with 51 other states and territories. The objectives of the challenge are...

  • Convene a state/territory interagency military and civilian team of leaders to develop an implementation plan to prevent suicide among SMVF that will advance the VA’s National Strategy for Preventing Veteran Suicide and incorporate evidence-based strategies from the CDC’s Preventing Suicide: A Technical Package of Policy, Programs, and Practices.
  • Engage with city, county, territory and state stakeholders to enhance and align local and state-wide suicide prevention efforts.
  • Understand the issues surrounding suicide prevention for SMVF.
  • Increase knowledge about the challenges and lessons learned in implementing best policies and practices by using state/territory-to-state/territory and community-to-community sharing.
  • Implement promising, best, and evidence-based practices to prevent and reduce suicide at the local level.
  • Define and measure success, including defining assignments, deadlines, and measurable outcomes to be reported.

Utah’s interagency team will be focusing on three priority areas in their efforts to reduce suicide : (1) identify SMVF and screen for suicide risk, (2) promote connectedness and improve care transitions and (3) educate the public about limiting access to lethal means and improve safety planning.

This webpage provides information and updates on the efforts of Utah's team. Most importantly, it serves as a directory of mental health and suicide prevention resources and services for service members, Veterans and their families.