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    Gun Buying Restrictions on Base Are Needed to Reduce Suicides, Pentagon Panel Says

    Gun Buying Restrictions on Base Are Needed to Reduce Suicides, Pentagon Panel Says

    exchange stores should stop selling guns to troops under 25 years old and require across-the-board waiting periods on firearm and ammunition purchases to reduce high suicide rates, an independent advisory panel to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is suggesting.

    The firearms restrictions, along with repealing a law passed by Congress in 2013 barring the military from tracking gun purchases, could help reduce the alarmingly high number of troops who continue to kill themselves, the Suicide Prevention and Response Independent Review Committee said in its report released Friday.

    Austin created the advisory panel in March 2022, saying the rate of military suicides was too high. The deaths increased 44% between 2015 and 2020 despite a decade of policies and spending on the problem, and the committee — focusing on an issue that is a political lightning rod — said it found guns and access to guns on play a central role.

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    “When we look at the science of suicide prevention, there's arguably only one thing that all researchers agree on,” said Dr. Craig Bryan, a lethal means safety expert at Ohio State University who sits on the panel, said during a media roundtable Friday. “And that one thing is that taking steps to slow down convenient access to highly lethal methods like firearms is the single most effective strategy for saving lives.”

    Restricting gun…

    Continue Reading This Article At Military.com

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