(Washington, DC) – “It’s bad enough that veterans have had to bear the cross of exposure to toxic agents during our military service,” said Vietnam Veterans of America National President John Rowan. “It is worse to see our children and grandchildren afflicted with health conditions we suspect have derived from our exposure, and to think we are the cause of their hurt and pain. Today, however, we see real light at the end of a long, grim tunnel with the introduction of the ‘Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015.’ This legislation, when enacted, will establish within the Department of Veterans Affairs a national center for research on the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions of the descendants of veterans exposed to toxic substances during their service,” Rowan said. >>READ ENTIRE PRESS RELEASE
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If you are planning on attending VVA’s 17th National Convention, the cutoff date for preregistration is fast approaching. Download the electronic form located on www.vva.org; fill it out; and send it by regular mail, postmarked no later than June 20.
The registration form can be found here: http://www.vva.org/documents/15Registration_000.pdf
VVA National Awards
VVA National Awards are submitted by mail and must be postmarked by May 22, 2015.
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More Veteran News
VA Hospital Threatens Whistleblowers with $20,000 Fine
According to an April 30 Washington Examiner article by Luke Rosiak, officials managing the VA’s Caribbean Healthcare System this month began threatening employees who leak information to outsiders with a $20,000 fine while also pressuring the Office of the Inspector General to identify workers who previously leaked documents showing evidence of widespread wrongdoing in the facility.
VA Crisis Line under Investigation
In a May 2 Military Times article by Patricia Kimes, Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) recently sent a letter to VA Secretary Bob McDonald asking for data on the Crisis Line's call volume, hold times, and average wait times between when a call is made and when the caller can see a VA therapist or counselor, or a community provider, in person. Nelson's request was made in response to a news report by Tampa television station WFTS that Air Force veteran Ted Koran was placed on hold repeatedly for up to 10 minutes at a time as he fought off suicidal thoughts.
VA Fails to Provide Maternity Care
According to a May 1 article by Bryant Jordan posted on the Military.com website, when combat-wounded veteran Dawn Halfaker learned she was pregnant, she thought that the Department of Veterans Affairs would help coordinate her care and pay related bills. But Halfaker quickly found that the VA was not much help, leaving her on her own to find a provider and pay for services.
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Helping Veterans, Communities and Those Serving in Harm's Way.
"Books in Review II," is an online feature that complements "Books in Review," which runs in The VVA Veteran, the national magazine of Vietnam Veterans of America.
"Arts of War," is Vietnam Veterans of America's up-to-the-minute compendium of information, news and reviews about the arts—movies, television, stage plays, musicals, music, dance, popular and fine arts, and more—that deal with Vietnam veterans and the Vietnam War.
(Washington, D.C.)—Today, Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) and the National Veterans Council for Legal Redress (NVCLR) filed suit against the Department of Defense and the Departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force to compel the release of records regarding their discharge of veterans with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), seeks to shed light on how the military adjudicates applications filed by veterans with PTSD who received an other-than-honorable or other bad discharge and who later seek to have their discharge upgraded.
On September 3, 2014, then-Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel ordered the administrative boards established by Congress to review discharges of service members to give “liberal consideration” to applications from veterans with PTSD. Many veterans have suffered from PTSD without adequate recognition or support for their combat-related injury. This is particularly true for Vietnam-era veterans, as PTSD was not a recognized medical diagnosis until 1980. As a result, thousands of these veterans received other-than-honorable discharges because of misconduct attributable to their undiagnosed PTSD.
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Personality Disorder Discharges
The Department of Defense (DoD) has violated the law by failing to release records showing that it has wrongfully discharged nearly 26,000 service members on the basis of so-called "Personality Disorder."