Michigan House Republicans
House approves Rep. Bruck’s plan to increase access to veterans’ mental health services
RELEASE|June 21, 2024
Contact: William Bruck

State Rep. Will Bruck and the Michigan House of Representatives this week voted to move forward with a plan to help more veterans access mental health services in Michigan.

Bruck, a retired Army veteran, sponsored the legislation to help military service members, veterans, and their families cope with the effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, anxiety, depression, and other mental health challenges.

“I speak from experience,” said Bruck, R-Erie. “When you’re coming off of a deployment you have one thing on your mind. You want to get home. You will check any box or say anything you need to get home. But once you’re home and the dust settles, many people realize they’re not OK.  My goal is to help make sure veterans have access to resources once the chaos of returning home subsides.”

House Bills 5276, 5277, 5279, 5280, and 5720 would:

  • Establish the Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention within the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. It also ensures the collection of data surrounding mental health and substance abuse issues.
  • Establish a statewide outreach program on mental health and substance abuse for service members and veterans. The program would also provide resources and support for family members of service members and veterans navigating mental health and substance abuse issues.
  • Place the Buddy to Buddy Volunteer Mentorship Program within state law. This will offer stability for the program, which offers one-on-one, veteran-to-veteran mentorship.
  • Create a transition program for all Army and Air National Guard members in the state. Sponsored by Bruck and modeled after many of the same courses that are required for service members leaving the armed forces, this program will focus solely on mental health and wellbeing, navigating the military to civilian transition, and exploring ways to find purpose after service.   

“If this plan helps one or two veterans, it will be worth it,” Bruck said. “But I have a feeling it’s going to help a whole lot of veterans.”

The bills now advance to the Michigan Senate for further consideration.

The House also recently adopted a resolution, sponsored by Bruck, to declare June 2024 as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Month in Michigan.


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