Today is Remembrance Day so don’t just pause for a minutes’ silence to honour our fallen soldiers, also take the opportunity to reach out to a mate.
By Monique Ross
A veterans support group is urging Australians who pause for a minutes’ silence to honour fallen soldiers today to go a step further, and take an extra minute to reach out to a mate.
There has also been a four-fold increase in post-traumatic stress disorder cases since Australian troops first went to war in Afghanistan in 2001.
“These are incredibly saddening statistics,” Soldier On’s chief executive John Bale, himself a former soldier, told the ABC.
As Remembrance Day is marked across the country, Mr Bale hopes to highlight the ongoing mental health issues faced by many returned soldiers.
Noting that today can be tough for veterans as it stirs up painful memories, Mr Bale urged people to “take a minute to remember, and a minute to take action”.
“Take one minute to remember the ultimate sacrifice made by so many, and then take one minute to remember the recently returned veterans and the challenges and struggles they face,” he said.
“Support those who have been in contemporary conflicts — so East Timor, Afghanistan, Iraq, and also the peacekeepers and Australian Federal Police officers that support the troops.”