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Posts Tagged ‘military veterans’

State Credentialing Requirements Continue to Vex Veterans

  • September 18, 2015
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Separating service members continue to face significant barriers to gaining civilian credentials for skills they mastered during their military service, witnesses told a House subcommittee last week. The problem stems from the dizzying array of state requirements and training programs veterans must satisfy, reported Military Times. “This situation creates an artificial barrier to employment for veterans,” Roy Swift, executive director of Workcred, an affiliate of the American National Standards Institute, told the Economic Opportunity Subcommittee of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee …

Elevated Risk of Homelessness follows Personnel Discharged for Misconduct

  • September 10, 2015
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Service members separated from the military due to misconduct are almost five times as likely to become homeless than personnel with normal separations, according to a recent study.
Although only 5.6 percent of the service members in the study of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans had been separated for misconduct, they represented 25.6 percent of homeless veterans at their first visit to a Veterans Affairs hospital, researchers at the VA Salt Lake City Health Care System found. The researchers expected to see a correlation between misconduct-related discharges — typically prompted by drug use, unauthorized absences and other misconduct — and homelessness, reported Stars and Stripes. “But we were surprised at how high the rates were,” said Jamison Fargo at Utah State University, one of the authors of the study …

Indiana Lags behind Other States in Delivering Services, Veterans Advocates Say

  • September 7, 2015
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A veterans advocate in Indiana wants the state to do more to help the men and women who have served the country transition to civilian life, saying the state lags behind others in the services it provides. “The state of Indiana has not recognized veterans as an economic positive impact. And they have not taken action to help veterans,” said James Bauerle, who retired from the Army as a brigadier general. Bauerle pointed to a 2014 report by the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs that found the agency conducts little outreach, delivers inconsistent service, has a workflow “heavily based on the movement of paper” and faces “barriers to efficiently serving the veteran population statewide …

Ohio Tax Break for Retirees Pays off over Time, Supporters Say

  • September 3, 2015
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The cost to Ohio’s treasury of the full tax exemption it offers for military pensions has climbed steadily since the state began offering the benefit eight years ago, but advocates of the initiative say it will reap long-term dividends. After retiring as a colonel at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in 2004, Jose Rodriguez and his family settled in a suburb of Dayton even though the tax exemption did not yet exist. For Rodriguez, the incentive is important for retaining educated professionals who retire at the installation and consider moving out of state. “The quality of the military retiring here at Wright-Patt — it’s humongous because of the level of education that they have,” he told the Dayton Daily News. “If the people retiring were to go someplace else, to me, I look at that as seasoned brain drain that I don’t know this region or the base would be able to retain otherwise …

S.C. Legislature Approves Seven Bills Aiding Service Members, Veterans

  • August 18, 2015
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A measure establishing a committee to assess the state’s delivery of veterans services was one of seven bills the South Carolina General Assembly approved this year that support service members and their families, and veterans. The veterans services bill directs the committee to study state and local veterans issues, and to recommend legislation to improve the structure, delivery and coordination of veterans services in South Carolina, reported the State. Another measure requires state colleges and universities to charge in-state tuition to veterans as soon as they become residents. The bill waives the requirement that individuals must live in South Carolina for a year to receive in-state tuition …

District Finds Room for Homeless Veterans at Walter Reed

  • August 14, 2015
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Help USA, a national group founded almost 30 years ago by current New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, plans to renovate a series of single-occupant apartments at the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center, under a deal being negotiated by the Army and the District of Columbia. The project, slated to include 75 efficiency apartments, would be the only component of the city’s redevelopment plan for 66.5 acres at the medical campus aimed at veterans, reported the New York Times. “It’s an iconic setting,” Thomas Hameline, president and CEO of the nonprofit which has launched veterans programs in four states, said of the historic hospital in northwest Washington …

State Lawmakers Eye Military Retirees

  • August 11, 2015
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Maryland and Connecticut this year enacted legislation exempting some or all of military pensions from state income tax, furthering a keen competition among states to attract military retirees. Military retirees are highly desirable, as they typically seek civilian employment, generating income taxes and bolstering the economies of the states they live in, reported The legislation signed by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) exempts the first $10,000 of retirement pay from state taxation. Only retirees’ first $5,000 of pay had been exempt previously …

Veterans Court Movement Gains Momentum

  • July 31, 2015
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If there was any doubt as to how far the push for communities to offer veterans treatment courts has come, this week’s national convention at Maryland’s National Harbor provided a resounding answer. About 1,000 judges, mentors, advocates and graduates of veterans courts attended the conference, which devoted a day for court supporters to lobby senators to match $15.5 million in funding recommended by the House for veterans court programs, reported Stars and Stripes. “This is an exciting time for the veterans treatment court movement,” said Melissa Fitzgerald, senior director for Alexandria, Va.-based Justice for Vets, an advocacy group trying to increase the number of veterans courts around the country. “The courts are working and they’re returning healthy veterans to their families and their communities …

Encouraging Signs Revealed in Veteran Employment Survey

  • July 29, 2015
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Transitioning service members and veterans are showing greater confidence in their abilities, a feeling that is shared by employers, according to the results of the latest Veterans Talent Index, a survey sponsored by Monster and “Generally, the process of changing attitudes and building confidence in a population tends to be slow,” said Greg Smith, president of “However, in four short years, both employers and veterans have done so with great results. Veteran unemployment is down and confidence in their ability to achieve success in the civilian sector is up, thanks to the tireless efforts of many,” Smith said. Employers are hiring veterans because they are the best qualified candidates and because of their prior work experience, not because they served in the military …

Service Providers Strive to End Veteran Homelessness in Chattanooga

  • July 26, 2015
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Nearly a dozen social service agencies supporting the Chattanooga, Tenn., region met last week to coordinate their efforts to end veteran homelessness by next year. Chattanooga is among 75 cities striving to end homelessness among veterans as part of the Zero: 2016 initiative. “We’re going to get veterans housed,” said Donna Maddox, director of Joe Johnson Mental Health Center, reported the Times Free Press. Chattanooga has 80 homeless veterans according to the most recent annual point-in-time count. The city has housed 37 veterans in the past six months …

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