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Downey, Freiman, Lopez Bill Permitting Donations to DMVA for Veteran Suicide Prevention Clears Assembly

Funds to Be Used for PSAs, Media Outreach

As part of a statewide effort to combat suicide among the state’s veterans, a bill that would permit the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) to raise donations from the public and private sectors for media outreach geared towards these service men and women was recently approved 77-0-0 by the full Assembly.

The measure (A-3612) would permit DMVA to accept gifts, grants and donations to support the veteran suicide prevention public service announcement (PSA) program. Assembly Democrats Joann Downey (D-Monmouth), Roy Freiman (D-Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Somerset) and Yvonne Lopez (D-Middlesex) are sponsors of the legislation and released the following joint statement:

“Suicide continues to impact people from all walks of life, including our veterans. For a variety of emotional, physical, social and economic reasons, veterans can become despondent and suicidal. This distress often stems from not being aware of or connected to available resources. The benefit of this bill is two-fold because not only will it raise money for PSAs that can help reach veterans with life-saving suicide prevention messaging, but it also will allow the public and private sectors to aid veterans by donating to such a worthy cause.”