Colorado Senate Backs Mental Healthcare for Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans’ Families

CBS4 Denver

(AP)  DENVER  The Senate gave initial backing Tuesday to a proposal that would pay for mental health counseling for the families of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans.

The proposal (Senate Bill 146) would set up a three-year pilot program in Colorado Springs to provide mental health treatment and education to the families of veterans who cannot get services on their own.

The program would cost $300,000 a year, which would be taken from the state’s share of the national tobacco settlement. Families would pay up to $20 a month to participate.

Veterans are still eligible to receive mental health care through the military after they leave the service, but their families are not, said Sen. John Morse, D-Colorado Springs, the sponsor.

He said if spouses and children get counseling, veterans might be encouraged to do the same.

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