U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Dan Sullivan (R-AK) commended the United States Coast Guard (USCG) for updating its mental and behavioral health policies to achieve parity with the policies of the Department of Defense (DoD), a legislative effort Senator Murkowski spearheaded this Congress.
In February, Senator Murkowski introduced with Senators Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and Patty Murray (D-WA) the Guarding Mental Health Act, legislation to support Coast Guard members who seek help for their mental health by preventing them from being automatically discharged.
“I thank the Coast Guard for taking the initiative to update their policies to mirror that of the rest of the armed services as it relates to members being treated for mental or behavioral health conditions. This necessary update allows members to seek the help they need without having the fear of being automatically discharged,” said Sen. Murkowski. “We should support our military members in all the ways that we can—especially when it pertains to mental health.”
“I applaud the Coast Guard for bringing their mental health policies in-line with other branches of the military,” said Sen. Sullivan. “Members of the Coast Guard should not be threatened with automatic discharge if they seek professional help dealing with the extreme stresses they may encounter in their jobs. Our brave Coast Guardsmen can now continue fulfilling their important missions—conducting search-and-rescue operations in severe storms, combatting transnational crime, and securing our maritime borders—and seek support when they need it.”