Guthertz Seeks DoD Funding for Mental Health Services for Returning Guam Veterans

176

Guam – Guam Senator Judi Guthertz has written to the staff of House Military Subcommittee Chair Joe Wilson seeking  help in finding Federal funds for mental health services for Guam’s returning veterans.

Wilson led a CODEL to Guam last week and Guthertz says she felt “he was just the person to track down assistance for hundreds of Guam troops returning to island after years of multiple overseas deployments.”

In her letter to Congressman Wilson’s staffer, Colonel Craig M. Greene, Guthertz asks about the status of previously promised DoD funding for a Guam community mental health facility which, she fears, may be cut from the fiscal 2013 budget.

The Senator also asks for help “in getting the Pentagon to commit to standing up a Warrior Transition Battalion in Guam to service our active military personnel, including National Guard and Army Reserve personnel who are returning from war zones.”

READ Senator Guthertz’s release in FULL below:

August 14, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SENATOR GUTHERTZ LOOKING FOR DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE FUNDING FOR MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES TO RETURNING GUAM
TROOPS AND MILITARY DEPENDANTS ON ISLAND

South Carolina Republican Representative Joe Wilson chairs the House Military Personnel Subcommittee, so after his recent visit to Guam, Senator Judi Guthertz thought he was just the person to track down assistance for hundreds of Guam troops returning to island after years of multiple overseas deployments.

Senator Guthertz, chair of the Guam Military Buildup Committee, noted that Congressman Wilson’s subcommittee has military health care among its
responsibilities. “This subcommittee makes sure that our troops and their loved ones are receiving the first class benefits that they deserve,” Wilson’s official website states.

In past correspondence with former Assistant Secretary of the Navy Jackalyne Pfannenstiel, Guthertz repeatedly reminded the official that Guam troops and veterans in need of treatment for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder [PTSD] can only go to the Hawaii Warrior Transition Battalion, far from the support of their families at home.

Senator Guthertz has also often stated that resources for military dependants requiring these specialized psychological services are severely limited in Guam.

Recent reports suggest that previously promised DoD funding for a Guam community mental health facility may be cut from the fiscal 2013 budget.
In a letter, Senator Guthertz asked Congressman Wilson’s staffer, Colonel Craig M. Greene, to find out the status of this funding.

“Finally, any help you can provide us in getting the Pentagon to commit to standing up a Warrior Transition Battalion in Guam to service our active military personnel, including National Guard and Army Reserve personnel who are returning from war zones would be greatly appreciated,” Senator Guthertz wrote.