Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Social Work


Social Work

First Advisor

Regina T Praetorius


As the number of suicides among the military and veteran population continue to increase each year, concern has generated program and research development. The Department of Defense (2012) discovered 40% of suicides in the military were in the age range of 17 and 24. They also reported that among military members, 42.1% had a mental health diagnosis, 23.0% had a history of substance abuse or addiction, and 13.5% reported a history of self-harm (DoD, 2012), all pieces to the theory of suicide (Van Orden et al., 2010). Another population with similar combat experiences to military members and veterans are civilian contractors. Although they have similar jobs and experiences overseas, civilian contractors do not receive the same quality of healthcare (Kestian, 2007; Miller, 2009). Civilian contractors are entitled to receive care covered by the Defense Base Act (DBA) and War Hazards Compensation Act (WHCA) (U.S. Department of Labor, 1941, 1942). With similar combat experience to the military, it was expected in this study to see reports from civilian contractors of mental health struggles. Results along with other contractors’ experience (Kestian, 2007; Miller, 2009) demonstrate these laws are not enough and need to be updated.


Civilian contractors, Suicide, Mental health


Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Work


Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

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