Kansas Gov. Kelly signs National Guard counseling bill

TOPEKA — Gov. Laura Kelly has signed a bill that protects the identities of Kansas National Guard members who undergo counseling.

The legislation signed by the governor on Wednesday is designed to encourage service members to seek help if needed. It will exempt counseling-related notes and records from open records requests and court proceedings.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the bill, which passed the House and Senate with nearly unanimous approval, comes after the Guard experienced three suicides in the last 18 months and nine in the past five years.

Maj. Gen. Lee Tafanelli said the legislation adds to a variety of services already available to soldiers.

Kelly also signed a bill that makes it easier for Kansas Guard members to receive educational assistance.

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