Veteran’s Conference to Consider the Invisible Wounds of War

Mental health professionals, veterans, civilians and students will gather for a Duquesne University conference that will highlight family and community roles in welcoming soldiers home from war.

Moral Injury and the Role of Community in the Veteran's Homecoming will take place on Friday, Nov. 2, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Charles J. Dougherty Ballroom. The conference is co-sponsored by the Department of Psychology and the School of Nursing.

"What returning veterans want most is a family and community for whom their experience and well-being matter," Dr. Roger Brooke, professor of psychology and director of military psychological services, said.

"The main problem with the diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, is that it implies you need to be a trained mental health practitioner in order to help. You don't. For thousands of years, traditional societies healed veterans and themselves from the moral and spiritual wounds of war without the mental health professions," he said.

Attendees will learn about the destructive effects of the psychiatric diagnosis of PTSD, the role of the religious community, the Veterans Court and military sexual trauma, among other topics.

"My hope is that the conference will empower veterans, their families and local communities, and inform mental health professionals about how the civilian community is a resource," Brooke said.

Continuing education credits will be available for nurses, psychologists and mental health professionals.

Registration can be completed online. Lunch will be provided.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The University's academic programs, community service, and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim. 

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