The Chicago Midwest BIG Chapter and the Blacks In Government Organization are a big supporters of our Veterans. As a result, the current events unfolding in Afghanistan are upsetting for all Americans. We feel deeply for our veterans, especially those who served in Afghanistan and the family members and caregivers of those who have suffered loss or injuries to loved ones in this war. We are extremely proud of all those in various governmental agencies and entities who stepped forward to serve and continued to serve after 9/11. Your bravery in the face of adversity mattered, and the leadership of the Department respects and honors your service. We honor the sacrifices of the many service members and their families who have been impacted over the last 20 years of the conflict. We also thank our colleagues who have worked in labor advocacy, social justice, or humanitarian efforts in Afghanistan. We also acknowledge that many have unpleasant thoughts, resurfacing memories, and difficult emotions due to current events. If you feel upset, depressed or angry about the recent developments in Afghanistan, please reach out to others – colleagues, supervisors, the employee assistance program, or a resource below. Also, our federal partners at the Department of Veteran Affairs are working quickly to share VA resources: call center information, peer support, and many other community services listed below. I ask that you widely share this information to help those who need it.
Veterans Crisis Line - If you are having thoughts of su***de, call 1-800-273-8255, then PRESS 1 or visit http://www.veteranscrisisline.net/
For emergency mental health care, you can also go directly to your local VA medical center 24/7 regardless of your discharge status or enrollment in other VA health care.
Vet Centers - Discuss how you feel with other Veterans in these community-based counseling centers. 70% of Vet Center staff are Veterans. Call 1-877-927-8387 or find one near you.
VA Mental Health Services Guide - This guide will help you sign up and access mental health services.
MakeTheConnection.net - information, resources, and Veteran to Veteran videos for challenging life events and experiences with mental health issues.
Download VA's self-help apps - Tools to help deal with common reactions like, stress, sadness, and anxiety. You can also track your symptoms over time.
Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) - Tragedy Assistance Program For Survivors (TAPS) Is Here For You! Request a Peer Mentor or call 800-959-TAPS (8277)
VA Women Veterans Call Center - Call or text 1-855-829-6636 (M-F 8AM - 10PM & SAT 8AM - 6:30PM ET)
VA Caregiver Support Line - Call 1-855-260-3274 (M-F 8AM - 10PM & SAT 8AM - 5PM ET)
Together We Served -Find your battle buddies through unit pages
American Red Cross Military Veteran Caregiver Network - Peer Support and Mentoring or call the Hero Care Network at 1-877-272-7337
Free, confidential support for Veterans in crisis and their families and friends. Call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 or text to 838255.