As we all strive to support our nation’s efforts to mitigate the impact of COVID-19, the Department of Defense (DoD) maintains its commitment to supporting our most valuable resource – our people. The personal health and well-being of our Service members, civilian employees, and families is paramount. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations; and, certainly, an infectious disease outbreak that requires social distancing, quarantine, or isolation is bound to generate stress. Many across our nation – and around the world – are feeling stress, uncertainty, anxiety, disconnectedness, financial insecurity, as well as potentially feeling hopelessness. For some, such experiences can be associated with an increased risk for suicide. Finding healthy ways to cope with stress during this time will help us to remain strong. The following are some tips and resources both within and outside the DoD to help cope with stressors associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Annual Suicide Report (ASR)

Effective January 1, 2019, the Department of Defense (DOD) Annual Suicide Report (ASR) serves as the release authority for the official annual suicide counts and unadjusted rates for the DOD.  The Department is fully committed to preventing suicides in our military community – every death by suicide is a tragedy.  Our third ASR presents recent suicide data for Service members and their families and describes current and future efforts underway to combat suicide in the Department of Defense.  To view the Calendar Year 2020 Annual Suicide Report, please click here.

Department of Defense Wants You to "Connect to Protect" for Suicide Prevention Month 

The battle to prevent suicide reaches far beyond an awareness month for the Department of Defense (DOD).  It is a top priority for the DOD all year.  This September, DOD observes Suicide Prevention Month (SPM) by spotlighting initiatives to educate our military community about suicide prevention and connecting them with resources.
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Military leaders take on the duty of protecting their own, both on and off the battlefield. But when it comes to creating an environment that is safe, inclusive, and supportive in order to prevent suicide, knowing what to do or say can be challenging. It is our hope that leaders take advantage of the Leaders Suicide Prevention Safe Messaging Guide, a resource to help you navigate your role as a leader and a communicator in the fight against suicide. Learn the facts and how to address misconceptions about suicide; learn the dos and don’ts in communicating about suicide, understand how to lead with caring and effective language; discover outreach and engagement opportunities to mobilize your community. View and download the guide here.


Veteran/Military Crisis Line

The Defense Suicide Prevention Office does not provide crisis services. If you or someone you know is in crisis, contact the Veteran/Military Crisis Line for immediate assistance.

Military OneSource

DSPO Links

DSPO Social Media


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