Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News

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Veterans!  Here’s your Top 10 News stories of the day compiled from the latest sources

We encourage you to browse our list so that you can take what you want and keep what you need…

1.Blasts from the Past Still Reverberate.  While the U.S. stopped testing nuclear weapons above ground in 1962, many Veterans today—known as “Atomic Veterans”—still deal with lingering effects that come with exposure to radiation.

2. The Graffiti of War.  Jaeson “Doc” Parsons is a veteran too.  Like other veterans, he recognized the discontinuity that exists between veterans and the civilian population that vastly outnumbers them.  Returning from Iraq in 2007, Parsons nurtured an idea that had been forming for a while.  This idea has been transformed into The Graffiti of War Foundation and its […]

3. Army band brings smiles to faces of earthquake evacuees.  The mission for one group of U.S. soldiers working in northern Japans tsunami zone is simple put smiles on the faces of people whose homes were damaged or destroyed in last months disaster.

4. Words From Wartime.  Inside Higher Ed  More than 220000 veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are enrolled in colleges across the US thanks to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, according to the US Department of Veterans Affairs. Many colleges are keenly aware that student veterans are coming to …

5. Former Maine Congressman Pushes for Veterans’ Trust Fund.  MPBN News  Representatives of the military at the symposium did not comment directly on Andrews’ proposal–although they did agree with him that a veteran can have a hard time navigating the bureaucracy of the US Department of Veterans Affairs. …

6. VA makes progress to end veteran homelessness.  The Fort Gordon Signal  And now that they’ve returned home and rejoined civilian life, an alarming number of veterans have found themselves on the streets and living under bridges. The US Department of Veterans Affairs is making progress on its commitment to end homelessness …

7. Lawmakers Want Dedicated Task Force In Dental Clinic Probe.  WHIO Dayton  Mike Turner on Thursday urged the US Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki to establish a dedicated task force to investigate issues surrounding misconduct at the Dayton VA Medical Center. The urging came after two patients tested …

8. State braces for federal shutdown.  Annapolis Capital  About a dozen federal agencies – including the Environmental Protection Agency, the US Department of Agriculture and the US Department of Veterans Affairs – have offices in Anne Arundel County. Just over 9300 county residents work for the federal …

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9. Backlog buries veterans’ claims.  USA Today  The number of veterans’ disability claims taking more than four months to complete has doubled, prompting criticism from veterans and Congress that the Department of Veterans Affairs failed to prepare for a rise …

10. Activities to focus on government.  Charleston Post Courier  Howard Metcalf, retired Army veteran and head of the Governor’s Office of Veterans Affairs, will make a presentation about veterans benefits available through the county and state for veterans, military service members and their families. …

HAVE YOU HEARD?

Did you know that April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month? About one in five women and one in a hundred men seen in VA medical facilities report that they experienced Military Sexual Trauma (MST); that is, sexual assault or repeated, threatening sexual harassment that occurred during military service. MST can affect veterans’ physical and mental health many years afterwards. VA offers a variety of services designed to assist veterans who have experienced MST. For example, treatment for physical and mental health conditions related to MST is available at every VA facility and is provided to veterans free of charge, regardless of service-connection status. Veterans may be able to receive this free MST-related care even if they are not eligible for other VA care. Every VA facility also has an MST Coordinator who serves as a point of contact for veterans and staff. It’s important to remember that every VA employee has the power to help veterans recover from MST by responding sensitively to inquiries about MST, remaining knowledgeable about VA’s MST-related services, and ensuring that information about veterans’ MST status is kept confidential. For more information, contact your facility’s MST Coordinator or visit the MST Resource homepage . Veterans can access information at www.mentalhealth.va.gov/msthome.asp.

 

 

IN OTHER NEWS

 

 

 

  • Gates tells troops that U.S. future in Iraq is unresolved.  With plans to retire later this year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates began saying his goodbyes to troops in Iraq on Thursday. But whether the 47,000 servicemembers in Iraq also will get to head home later this year remains undecided.

 

 

  • Government shutdown weighs heavily on off-base residents.  With a potential shutdown of the federal government looming and the likelihood that their paychecks will be delayed, U.S. servicemembers overseas have begun to worry about interruptions in their off-base housing allowances and their ability to pay their rent.

 

 

  • Gala Honors Survivor Assistance Program Supporters. American Forces Press Service After Crystal Becker “lost her husband, Army Staff Sgt. Shane R. Becker,” who died while serving in Iraq, she found “solace in the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, or TAPS, a program committed to providing emotional support and services to grieving military families.” On Tuesday night, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen joined Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton A. Schwartz and Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki in “praising the program that has brought so much comfort to so many military families.” Mullen and Schwartz both spoke at “TAPS’ annual Honor Guard Gala held at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium” in Washington, DC, as did Shinseki, who was “honored…with the annual TAPS Military Leadership Award for his lifetime commitment of supporting surviving families of the fallen while in uniform and now as VA secretary.”

 

  • DoD, VA To Unite E-Records. NextGov “Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs will create a common platform” for their electronic health records (EHRs) and that a “plan for implementing” that venture is “due in early May. Lt. Gen. Eric Schoomaker, the Army surgeon general, said last week that a single EHR would make it easier to transfer patient data and increase the amount of patient information shared between the two departments.”

 

  • VHA Would Stay Open During Shutdown. Washington Post “Washington braced Wednesday for a far-reaching federal government shutdown.” If a shutdown were to occur, however, “several fee-based government operations, or agencies funded through multi-year budgets, would stay open, including the Veterans Health Administration,”

 

  • VA, DOD Conducting “Major Study” On Traumatic Combat Injuries. Medscape “A major study is under way of combat injured soldiers, and its eventual aim is to assess how regional anesthesia, administered shortly after traumatic injury, affects later pain. Although the study so far has yielded only preliminary data on other aspects of post-injury pain, it was the focus of much interest”

 

  • Five Leading Healthcare Organizations To Exchange Patient Data. InformationWeek “Five of the nation’s leading healthcare organizations,” including Kaiser Permanente (KP), and “pioneering users of e-health records have banded together to create a new consortium to securely exchange their patients’ real-time, digitized medical information on demand, and to serve as a national model for low-cost, data interoperability among clinicians.” “While technology details for …

 

  • Going On The Block To Help Veterans In Need. The Cabinet, Souhegan Valley Chamber of Commerce has “partnered with Nashua’s Harbor Homes to raise money to help homeless veterans and their families” by holding a “Veterans First Auction on April 16.” Harbor Homes works with the US Department of Veterans Affairs, “which screens the men and women who are taken into the two” facilities run by Harbor Homes.

 

  • Centralia Man, 95, Has US Citizenship Confirmed. AP 95-year-old World War II veteran Leland Davidson “always knew he was an American,” and “now he has a certificate from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services to prove it.” When Davidson applied recently for an “enhanced driver’s license so he could visit Canada;” the country where he was born, he had “nothing to show” he was an American citizen.

 

  • Officials Break Ground On Veterans Facility At Homeless Emergency Project. Dunedin (FL) Patch On Tuesday, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for a facility that will “house veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.” It will be run by the Homeless Emergency Project (HEP), a Florida-based “non-profit homeless outreach group.”

 

  • Wilson Announces New Program For Veterans. Berkeley Independent “Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson recently announced a new program designed to assist ‘justice-involved’ veterans in the Lowcountry. In conjunction with the Veterans Administration and Crisis Ministries, Wilson announced the formation of the Ninth Circuit Veterans Treatment Court.”

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