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Prince Harry wants to improve the mental health of the armed forces


UPI News Service, 10/10/2017 

Prince Harry gave a speech Monday at the Ministry of Defense in London where he discussed improving the mental health of those in the armed forces.

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The speech was given to help launch a new partnership with the Ministry of Defense to help create a "more confident, focused and, ultimately, more combat-ready military".

"My 10 years in the army taught me a great deal. I learned about the true meaning of service, duty, resilience and dedication," Prince Harry began.

"But in many ways I have learned more about the sacrifices our servicemen and women make for us all since I left the army and continued my work with the Invictus Games. Having a step back from day-to-day army life has allowed me to think carefully about how we prepare, support, and care for those who wear the uniform."

"Quite simply, these men and women are prized assets which need to be continually invested in. We surely have to think of them as high-performance athletes, carrying all their kit, equipment and a rifle," he continued.

"Crucially, fighting fitness is not just about physical fitness. It is just as much about mental fitness too."

Prince Harry's partnership with the Ministry of Defense and the Royal Foundation will build upon a recently launched government strategy that wants to improve the mental health of military workers, civilian staff, their families and veterans.

The joint initiative is expected to create annual briefings, websites and specialist support to raise awareness and education about the importance of good mental health within the military.

"The military has faced the challenge of dealing with things like post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression," Prince Harry said, and noted the need to promote positive mental health management to "help prevent some of these issues before they develop".

"For too long, acknowledging emotion or challenging thoughts was seen as counterproductive to the fundamental characteristics of the Armed Forces. Today, we are saying that taking mental health seriously is what professional and dedicated service men and women must do to be above the rest and leading from the front," he concluded.



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