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Filner Wants More Mental Health Funding for Marines, Soldiers

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Aired 5/13/09

One San Diego lawmaker wants Congress to boost mental health funding for soldiers and marines. This comes after the multiple killings at Camp Liberty in Iraq. Peter Granitz reports from Capitol Hill.

One San Diego lawmaker wants Congress to boost mental health funding for soldiers and marines. This comes after the multiple killings at Camp Liberty in Iraq.

Representative Bob Filner chairs the House Veterans' Affairs committee. He's says he's been trying to get the military to treat mental health the same as physical health for years. He says the shootings at the Baghdad base help his cause.

"The percentages of those who have these injuries are so high, that when we miss diagnosis, we inflict tremendous potential for pain on a community, themselves and their family," says Filner.

Filner and colleagues sent a letter supporting Defense Secretary Robert Gates' budget allocation of $300-million for mental health evaluations.

The goal is to require the military to screen all returning service members for mental health issues -- something it doesn't do now.

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