VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY JUNE 15, 2012

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY
June 15, 2012

In This Issue:
1. Senate VA Committee   Discusses Education and Employment Bills
2. VFW Opposes   Retirement Commission; What do You Think?
3. Connect to Congress   Today
4. Detroit Veterans   Hiring Fair
5. Consumer Alert
6. National POW/MIA   Day Poster
7. Three MIAs   Identified
1. Senate VA Committee Discusses Education and Employment Bills: This week, the   Senate Veterans Affairs’ Committee held a hearing to discuss 18 pieces of   legislation introduced over the last year. VFW submitted testimony and was   particularly interested in three education bills introduced by Committee   Chairman Patty Murray, D-WA.; original World War II G.I. Bill recipient Sen.   Frank Lautenberg, D-NJ.; and Post-9/11 G.I. Bill champion Sen. Jim Webb,   D-VA. VFW also voiced support for bills to improve financial and job   protections for service members and clarifying state licensing procedures for   veterans: To learn more about the hearing and to view the webcast, click   here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/watch-live-senate-to-discuss-veterans.html

 

2. VFW Opposes Retirement Commission; What   do You Think?: As the Senate prepares to debate the annual   National Defense Authorization Bill, the VFW has found troubling provisions   that would potentially bring about serious changes to the military   compensation and retirement systems. As written, this bill would create the   Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission — a body with   the charge to “achieve fiscal sustainability” and with the   authority to suggest reducing or restructuring benefits. The VFW opposes   changes to the military retirement system.
What do you think? To learn more about the commission and to take our quick   poll, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/06/what-do-you-think-senate-seeks.html

3. Connect to Congress   Today: VFW has testified over 25 times this Congressional   cycle on an array of 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.
To read our congressional testimony click here: http://www.vfw.org/VFW-in-DC/Congressional-Testimony/
To see how your members voted click here: http://capwiz.com/vfw/keyvotes.xc/?lvl=C

4. 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/.

5. Consumer Alert:   A new email-based phishing scam is now targeting military members, retirees   and DOD civilian employees. The email appears to come from the Defense   Finance and Accounting Services and displays a “.mil” email   address. The email states that those receiving VA disability compensation may   be able to obtain additional funds from the IRS. Email recipients are then   asked to send various VA and IRS documents containing their personal and   financial information, such as copies of VA award letters or their income tax   returns, to an address in Florida. Don’t do it! This personal information is   then used by the scammers to commit identity theft. For more information on   phishing scams, go to http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=155682,00.html.

6. National POW/MIA   Day Poster: The new 2012 National POW/MIA Recognition Day   poster was unveiled yesterday at the 43rd annual meeting of the National   League of POW/MIA Families in Arlington, Va. The VFW also participated on a   veterans` panel to detail the tremendous support we have provided the Full   Accounting Mission since last year’s meeting. This includes successfully   urging (then) Russian President Medvedev to appoint a new cochairmen and 31   commissioners to the U.S.-Russia Joint Commission on POW/MIAs, easing access   restrictions for American researchers to Chinese military archives in   Beijing, and visiting Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command personnel at their   headquarters in Hawaii and in the field in Thailand and Vietnam. To request a   copy of the POW/MIA Day poster, go to http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/posters/

7. Three MIAs   Identified: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office   announced the identification of remains belonging to three airmen who had   been missing in action from World War II and the Vietnam War. Returned home   are:
* Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Dwight D. Ekstam, 21, of Moline, Ill.. On April 22,   1944, Ekstam was a crewmember 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 crew were recovered.
* Navy Lt. William E. Swanson, 27, of Zimmerman, Minn. On April 11, 1965,   Swanson was piloting an A-1H Skyraider when it crashed while on an armed   reconnaissance mission over Khammouan Province, Laos. His aircraft was   reportedly struck by enemy fire. No parachute was observed.
* Air Force Capt. Virgil K. Meroney III, 25, of Fayetteville, Ark. On March   1, 1969, Meroney was aboard an F-4D Phantom II aircraft that crashed while on   night strike mission in Kahammouan Province, Laos. His aircraft was   reportedly hit by enemy fire. No parachutes were observed.
Read more about their individual recovery stories at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

 
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