From the Soldier side: this was sent via Army e-mail in recent days. After reading it, I think it made me crazy:
SUBJ: Policy Implementation - Mental Health Question 21In 2007, Army Cdrs & Army IG reported the negative impact Mental HealthQuestion 21 was having on the willingness of many Soldiers to seek neededmental health treatment.
Q#21 asked: "In the last 7 yrs, have you consultedwith a mental health professional or consulted with another health careprovider about a mental health condition?" Soldiers perceived that if they answer "yes" to Q21, they could jeopardize their ability to obtain or retaina security clearance needed for job performance or continued Army Service.
Army G2 checked with the Army Central Clearance Facility to see how manyclearances were denied or revoked solely on mental health issues, thenumbers revealed: Less than 1/4 of one percent of denied or revoked security clearances over the last 2 yrs were based on Psych issues (@ average 4 peryr). Self-disclosure of mental health treatment was not the deciding factor in clearance revocations & denials--in almost all cases there were unrelated concerns stemming from the clearance investigation process, which guided their judgment in rendering the adjudication denial/revocationdetermination.
In May 07, SECARMY requested SECDEF's personal support to get the Mental Health question eliminated to address Soldier perceptions that seeking mental health counseling could put their careers and service at risk. As a result of Army's efforts with SECARMY and SECDEF support, Question 21has been revised;
OMB will use the revised language on future editions ofSF86, but that will take a while; hence the OSD immediate implementingguidance pending a new form. Until such time, OPM publishes the updated SF-86, Security Managers will advise Army Personnel to use the revised language below when answeringQuestion 21 on the SF-86: --
Mental health counseling in and of itself is not a reason to revoke ordeny a clearance.-- In the last 7 years, have you consulted with a health care professional regarding an emotional or mental health condition or were you hospitalizedfor such a condition?-- Answer "No" if the counseling was for any of the following reasons andwas not court-ordered:- strictly marital, family, grief not related to violence by you; or- strictly related to adjustments form service in a military combat environment. -- If you answered "yes," indicate who conducted the treatment and/orcounseling, provide the following information, and sign the Authorizationfor Release of Medical Information Pursuant to the Health InsurancePortability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).POC is xxxxxx State Security Manager
I think what they figured out is a lot of troops going to Iraq are having friends die...and they go to talk to a shrink about it...then they're afraid they'll get axed or something.