Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News – September 21, 2011

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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.   Okinawa governor insists Futenma must relocate off the islandThe U.S. and Japanese governments have repeatedly promised to move forward with plans to relocate a controversial U.S. Marine Corps helicopter station from a populated urban area of Okinawa to a more remote location on the island.
2.   VA meeting outlines plans to assist homeless veterans.  St. Cloud Times  According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, about 12 percent of those who are homeless are veterans; veterans account for about 8 percent of the US population … veterans like Tim Gordon. “It took a near-death experience for me to get some mental …
3.   Forty Vendors Slated for Marino’s Senior Fair.  NorthcentralPa.com  The expo will feature exhibits by local, state and federal organizations including a visit by the US Department of Veterans Affairs Mobile Vet Center. The state legislative offices of Sen. Lisa Baker and Reps. Karen Boback, Sandra Major and Tina …
4.   Phoenix organization receives funds to steer veteran families.  Cronkite News  Female and minority veterans are at a higher risk for experiencing homelessness. Source: 2009 joint report by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Department of Veterans Affairs. PHOENIX – Chela Sullivan works every day with …
5.   UT Arlington offers workshop series focused on student veteran issues.  CisionWire
The US Department of Veterans Affairs says as soldiers return from Iraq and Afghanistan and tap into Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits, the number claiming education aid continues to increase. An average of 525 veterans enrolled at UT Arlington during both …
6.   US military lifts ban on openly gay troops.  The Guardian  She said many gay veterans discharged under DADT were often told – wrongly – that they were not eligible for full healthcare benefits through the US department of veterans’ affairs. Thomas said that her organisation would now put advocacy on this issue …
7.   Repeal ends decades-long fight against DADT.  After 18 years of controversy and questionable results, the law that forced the removal of more than 14,000 gay troops and left untold thousands more to risk their careers to keep a perilous secret was officially repealed Tuesday
8.   Special deer hunts begin for youths, disabled veterans.  The Morning Sun  Veterans must be determined to be 100 percent disabled by the US Department of Veterans Affairs to be eligible to participate in the Sept. 24-25 season. All hunters are required to wear hunter orange during these seasons. The recently adopted Hunter …
9.   Center for Military/Academic Transition and Health now open.  McDonough Voice  … for Comprehensive Access & Delivery Research and Evaluation (CADRE) at the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs and an assistant professor in the psychiatry department at the University of Iowa; and other dignitaries from the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs, …
10.Stillwater Veteran at Adaptive Sports Clinic.  Patch.com  … Veterans Summer Sports Clinic is an inspiring program, designed to teach recently-injured Veterans, like Simon, how participating in adaptive sports can change their lives,” according to a release from the US Department of Veterans Affairs. …

 

Have You Heard?

VA recently automated the online Health Benefits Renewal (10-10EZR) process for Veterans in an ongoing effort to streamline access to benefits. “This action dramatically reduces the time it will take for enrolled Veterans to submit updates to their demographic information and further reduces access barriers to needed care for Veterans,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. Previously, Veterans filling out the online 10-10EZR were required to print a copy, sign it and send it to their local medical center before updates to their personal, insurance or financial information could occur.  Veterans may now submit these updates online. For additional information, go to www.va.gov/healtheligibility or call VA’s toll-free number at 1-877-222-VETS (8387). The online form is available at www.1010ez.med.va.gov/sec/vha/1010ez/Form/1010ezr.pdf.

 

More Veteran News

 

  • Rosebud Sioux Tribe gets $7M for veterans cemetery.  Rapid City Journal  The US Department of Veterans Affairs has awarded the Rosebud Sioux Tribe almost $7 million to build a veterans cemetery near Mission. Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki announced the award on Monday, saying it was the first grant for a veterans’ …
  • Injuries Cost More Troops Their Limbs. USA Today  This year has seen an increase in “severe wounds that have resulted in loss of limbs to US servicemembers,” as troops begin increasing foot patrols of areas riddled with hidden IEDs. The number of incidents this year “is on a pace to exceed any year since the Afghanistan War began, according to the latest casualty data” from the Army’s Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. As of July, 134 members of the US military have “lost limbs in combat” in 2011, and there have been 79 cases of multiple amputations.
  •  Senior Health Officials In US To Examine Veteran System. Irish Times A delegation “of senior health service managers and doctors is in Washington this week to examine information technology and systems which are being used” by the US Department of Veterans Affairs. The Times adds, “The Department of Health said the trip to Washington was intended to develop a clear understanding of the capacities and advantages of a particular system, known as VistA, which was in use” by the US VA. According to the Times, VistA uses “open source software, which is generally free to use and develop,” so it “could be widely used in an Irish healthcare context.”
  • Federal IT Dashboard Beefed Up With Agency, IT Investment Ratings. Federal Computer Week  “The Social Security Administration got the highest overall rating for IT projects, while the Veterans Affairs Department received the lowest, according to the updated online Federal IT Dashboard. The dashboard can now be accessed through a new website, IT.usaspending.gov, and has additional information to evaluate and track nearly 800 federal IT projects, according to the White House’s new Open Government status report.” That report was “released on Sept. 16.”
  • Kan. Lawyer Gets Prison For Stealing From Veterans. AP  “A disbarred Wichita attorney who embezzled about $319,000 from military veterans was sentenced Monday to 18 months in federal prison after the judge noted that her thefts spanned more than a decade.” Janell Jenkins-Foster was “appointed curator for 18 veterans and conservator for two estates not managed by the Veterans Administration. Prosecutors allege that over 10 years, she embezzled more than $318,900 from 11 veterans’ accounts.”
  •  Pensacola’s VA Super Clinic Recognized By Joint Commission. Pensacola (FL) Business Journal  Veterans Affairs’ “Biloxi hospital, which operates an outpatient super clinic in Pensacola, was recognized by The Joint Commission for its efforts to improve care for veterans who suffered from pneumonia during calendar 2010. ‘We at VA are very pleased with the recognition from (the Joint Commission) and proud of the medical centers that made this list,’ said VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki, who added that the report place Veterans’ health care in the Panhandle among the top tiers of the country.” Shinseki added, “I hope this news confirms American Veterans’ confidence in the care they receive or convinces others to decide to try VA health care for the first time.”
  • Alexandria VAMC Clinic To Hold Open House Wednesday. Alexandria (LA) Town Talk  “The Alexandria Veterans Affairs Medical Center’s new Post-Deployment Health Care Clinic will host an open house from 1 to 5 p.m. Wednesday.” There will be a ribbon-cutting for the clinic, a “‘one-stop shop’ for Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn combat veterans.” The clinic will use an “interdisciplinary team approach…to meet the combat veteran’s physical and emotional needs.”
  •  Small Business Summit/Expo Set For Sept. 27–28. Louisiana Weekly  “To facilitate the growth and development of local small businesses, a Small Business Summit and Expo in conjunction with Delgado Community College on September 27-28, 2011. Events will be held both days in the Delgado Community College, City Park Campus Student Life Center, Building #23.” The “list of exhibitors includes the…US Department of Veterans Affairs.”
  • Q&A With Okie From Muskogee Joan McWilliams. Muskogee (OK) Phoenix  Joan McWilliams, who says she is a social worker at a Veterans Affairs hospital. She says she loves her “job. It’s new and different every day, I get to meet a lot of people, and am always learning something new.”
  • Building Of New Wilmington Veterans Clinic Gets Under Way. Wilmington (NC) Star News  “Bright yellow window decals stating ‘never again will one generation of veterans abandon another’ adorned several vehicles parked alongside the site of the planned veterans clinic at the Wilmington International Airport on Monday afternoon. The roughly 98,000-square-foot clinic is a long time coming after much planning and several postponements of the facility’s groundbreaking ceremony.”
  •  Housing Homeless Veterans. WPRI-TV  The US Department of Housing and Urban Development “will grant $167,503 to the Providence Housing Authority to supply permanent housing to 20 homeless veterans. This funding is part of nearly $1 million that is being distributed to public housing authorities to house veterans.” Veterans “participating in this program rent privately owned housing and utilize clinical and supportive services through the Providence Veterans Administration.”
  • Homeless Veterans Program To Relocate. WCSC-TV  “A homeless veterans program, which has helped thousands of vets get back on their feet,” will be relocating because it cannot afford to pay the rent at its current location. That is according to Joe Towles, who works for the Chesapeake Health Education Program (CHEP), a “transitional housing facility for veterans on the old Charleston Navy Base.” Veterans who live at the facility “go to outpatient treatment for addiction” at Veterans Affairs.
  • Disabled Marines Participate In Summer Sports Clinic. Camp Pendleton (CA) Patch “Some Camp Pendleton Marines are participating in the fourth annual Summer Sports Clinic for injured veterans, which kicked off over the weekend and runs through Friday. More than 100 disabled veterans have traveled to San Diego from around the country for the weeklong program, which is hosted by the…Department of Veterans Affairs.” One of the Camp Pendleton Marines competing in the clinic is Sgt. Robert Caudill, who said, “A lot of us, because of our disabilities, I know this is something that we’ll. It builds our confidence back up to be able to do stuff that we normally used to do.”
  • Michelle Obama’s Veterans’ Initiative: Meat Or Just Sizzle? Time  “Battleland” blog, Mark Benjamin notes that some advocates are uncertain how effective First Lady Michelle Obama’s Joining Forces initiative can be. Benjamin adds, “What veterans want most from government is for the Department of Defense” and Veterans Affairs to “provide quick access to quality healthcare, including mental healthcare, and the financial benefits they have earned.” Paul Sullivan, executive director of Veterans for Common Sense, “thinks the White House could better serve veterans by setting up an office staffed by former Pentagon and VA officials that would monitor and report to veterans, Congress and the federal agencies themselves on government progress delivering on these promises. This, however, would put the White House in the position of highlighting not just the many achievements –- and there are some significant ones during the Obama administration – but also the enduring deficiencies on veterans’ issues during the Obama administration.”
  • Let’s Hear It For Volunteers. Green Valley (AZ) News And Sun  Regina Ford writes that if you volunteer for Veterans Affairs “in Tucson or know anything about their public affairs office at the Southern Arizona VA Health Care System, you know Pepé Mendoza.” Ford says Mendoza is the “most cheerful, outgoing and extremely organized person I have had the pleasure to work with for many years. Not only does he send me the latest updates on many of the VA programs and ceremonies, he also volunteers on his own time for some incredible causes.”
  • The Veterans Crisis Line And National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Huffington Post Author Leila Levinson notes the “difference the Veterans Administration’s Crisis Line has made for veterans vulnerable to suicidal thoughts.” Levinson adds, “I’d like to take this opportunity to praise the work of countless individuals at the local VAs across the country.”
  • Asheville Groups Need Volunteers For Outreach Events For Homeless. Asheville (NC) Citizen-Times

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