Florida Senate - 2010 SB 1404
By the Committee on Military Affairs and Domestic Security
1 A bill to be entitled
2 An act relating to veterans’ suicide prevention;
3 directing the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, in
4 partnership with the Statewide Office for Suicide
5 Prevention and the Division of Community Colleges, to
6 establish the veterans’ suicide prevention pilot
7 project, subject to the availability of funding;
8 specifying the purpose of the project; providing
9 project requirements; providing staff activities;
10 requiring an evaluation report for the Governor and
11 Legislature; providing for project expiration;
12 amending s. 14.20195, F.S.; revising the membership of
13 the Suicide Prevention Coordinating Council to include
14 at least one veteran appointed by the Governor;
15 providing an effective date.
17 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
19 Section 1. Veterans’ suicide prevention pilot project.—
20 (1) PURPOSE.—The Department of Veterans’ Affairs, in
21 partnership with the Statewide Office for Suicide Prevention and
22 the Division of Community Colleges, and subject to the
23 availability of public or private funding, shall establish a
24 pilot project at a community college or vocational technical
25 training facility in a rural section of the state considered
26 underserved by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.
27 The purpose of the pilot project is to reduce the incidence of
28 suicide among veterans by conducting outreach activities and
29 increasing access to services and supports for veterans and
30 their families who may be in need of mental health services and
31 suicide prevention counseling.
32 (2) PILOT PROJECT.—The pilot project must:
33 (a) Provide outreach to veterans, their families, and the
34 community in order to increase information on and access to
35 services for veterans who are at risk of suicide.
36 (b) Develop a veteran-to-veteran peer support program that
37 reaches out to veterans on a continual basis.
38 (c) Provide linkage and access-assistance services for
39 veterans and their families to community mental health services
40 and United States Department of Veterans Affairs mental health
41 counseling services.
42 (3) PILOT PROJECT STAFF ACTIVITIES.—Pilot project staff may
43 provide veterans’ benefits assistance services, organize and
44 lead a veterans’ peer-to-peer support program, conduct liaison
45 and outreach with local mental health facilities and the United
46 States Department of Veterans Affairs health care system,
47 provide outreach to educational facility faculty and community
48 resources in order to educate persons about the risk of suicide
49 among veterans and the warning signs of potential suicide which
50 may be unique to veterans, and assist veterans and their
51 families in obtaining needed mental health counseling services
52 through all available federal, state, and local resources.
53 (4) PROJECT EVALUATION REPORT.—The department shall provide
54 the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of
55 the House of Representatives with a report that includes a
56 description of the project design, an evaluation of project
57 efficacy, a review of best practices developed during the
58 project, and recommendations regarding the application of best
59 practices to other areas of the state. The report is due by
60 March 1, 2013.
61 (5) EXPIRATION.—The pilot project shall expire July 1,
63 Section 2. Subsection (2) of section 14.20195, Florida
64 Statutes, is amended to read:
65 14.20195 Suicide Prevention Coordinating Council; creation;
66 membership; duties.—There is created within the Statewide Office
67 for Suicide Prevention a Suicide Prevention Coordinating
68 Council. The council shall develop strategies for preventing
70 (2) MEMBERSHIP.—The Suicide Prevention Coordinating Council
71 shall consist of 29
28 voting members.
72 (a) Fourteen members shall be appointed by the director of
73 the Office of Drug Control and shall represent the following
75 1. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Corporation
76 described in s. 394.655.
77 2. The Florida Association of School Psychologists.
78 3. The Florida Sheriffs Association.
79 4. The Suicide Prevention Action Network USA.
80 5. The Florida Initiative of Suicide Prevention.
81 6. The Florida Suicide Prevention Coalition.
82 7. The Alzheimer’s Association.
83 8. The Florida School Board Association.
84 9. Volunteer Florida.
85 10. The state chapter of AARP.
86 11. The Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association.
87 12. The Florida Council for Community Mental Health.
88 13. The Florida Counseling Association.
89 14. NAMI Florida.
90 (b) The following state officials or their designees shall
91 serve on the coordinating council:
92 1. The Secretary of Elderly Affairs.
93 2. The State Surgeon General.
94 3. The Commissioner of Education.
95 4. The Secretary of Health Care Administration.
96 5. The Secretary of Juvenile Justice.
97 6. The Secretary of Corrections.
98 7. The executive director of the Department of Law
100 8. The executive director of the Department of Veterans’
102 9. The Secretary of Children and Family Services.
103 10. The director of the Agency for Workforce Innovation.
104 (c) The Governor shall appoint five four additional members
105 to the coordinating council. At least four of the appointees
106 must have expertise that is critical to the prevention of
107 suicide or represent an organization that is not already
108 represented on the coordinating council. At least one of the
109 appointees must be a veteran.
110 (d) For the members appointed by the director of the Office
111 of Drug Control, seven members shall be appointed to initial
112 terms of 3 years, and seven members shall be appointed to
113 initial terms of 4 years. For the members appointed by the
114 Governor, three two members shall be appointed to initial terms
115 of 4 years, and two members shall be appointed to initial terms
116 of 3 years. Thereafter, such members shall be appointed to terms
117 of 4 years. Any vacancy on the coordinating council shall be
118 filled in the same manner as the original appointment, and any
119 member who is appointed to fill a vacancy occurring because of
120 death, resignation, or ineligibility for membership shall serve
121 only for the unexpired term of the member’s predecessor. A
122 member is eligible for reappointment.
123 (e) The director of the Office of Drug Control shall be a
124 nonvoting member of the coordinating council and shall act as
126 (f) Members of the coordinating council shall serve without
127 compensation. Any member of the coordinating council who is a
128 public employee is entitled to reimbursement for per diem and
129 travel expenses as provided in s. 112.061.
130 Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.