• Public Grossly Overestimates Propensity for Veterans to Experience Mental Health Issues0

    The misperception held by a significant portion of the public that more than half of veterans who have served since 9/11 suffer from mental health problems is hampering veterans’ prospects of successfully transitioning into civilian life, according to veterans advocates. A study conducted by the George W. Bush Institute’s Military Service Initiative revealed that about 40 percent of 1,000 surveyed adults believe more than half of the 2.8 million veterans who have served since 2001 have a mental health condition. The actual figure lies somewhere between 10 percent and 20 percent, according to a Rand Corp. estimate, reported Military Times. The survey also found that 80 percent of veterans say embarrassment or shame is a barrier to seeking treatment for traumatic brain injury or combat-related mental health conditions …

  • Early Focus on Entrepreneurship Would Pay Dividends When Veterans Transition0

    Many veterans possess the critical personality characteristics, leadership traits and technical skills required to be successful entrepreneurs, but they leave the military unprepared to pursue the challenges associated with starting a new business. To better prepare service members to become entrepreneurs, DOD should provide them the necessary stepping stones needed to successfully transition to business ownership starting at the beginning of their service, according to a commentary in Stars and Stripes. One step is teaching service members the importance of financial flexibility, not only increasing savings but also minimizing monthly payments for a car or home, write J. Michael Haynie, Syracuse University’s vice chancellor of Veteran and Military Affairs, and Douglas McCormick, a former active-duty Army officer and co-founder of HCI Equity …

  • Veterans Gain Protection against Employment Discrimination under Massachusetts Law

    Veterans Gain Protection against Employment Discrimination under Massachusetts Law0

    Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker last week signed legislation designed to ease the transition to civilian life for service members, providing veterans protection against employment discrimination and extending low-income housing opportunities statewide. The measure “continues to set the tone that Massachusetts leads the nation when it comes to the benefits and services that it provides our veterans,” said Francisco Ureña, secretary of the Department of Veterans’ Services. “There are provisions here that impact both active, reserve, national Guardsmen and women, Gold Star families.” The HOME Act also establishes the Office of State Veterans’ Homes and Housing within the Department of Veterans’ Services, which will provide state oversight to the Chelsea and Holyoke Soldiers Homes …

  • Virginia Law Establishes Pilot to Ease Process for Medics to Gain Civilian Credentials

    Virginia Law Establishes Pilot to Ease Process for Medics to Gain Civilian Credentials0

    Active-duty military medics and corpsmen participating in a pilot program in Virginia will be able to earn licenses or credentials recognized by civilian health care organizations, under legislation signed into law this week by Gov. Terry McAuliffe. The bill establishes a pilot program modeled after the Veterans Health Administration Intermediate Care Technician Pilot Program, which operates in 15 VA medical centers. The Virginia measure marks the first effort by a state to offer an expedited path to employment for veteran medics and corpsmen, according to a press release from the office of the governor …

  • DOD Overhauls Program to Aid Spouse Transition0

    The Defense Department’s overhauled transition program for military spouses will be available beginning this fall, according to a senior official. The program, which will be available for in-person training and online, focuses on three life stages — new spouses, spouses with mid-career service members and those already in transition, Eddy Mentzer, associate director of DOD’s office of military and family policy, told Military.com. The changes primarily reflect how the information will be delivered to spouses rather than new content. The component geared to new spouses will be rolled out first to give families a head start entering the civilian world …

  • Unemployment Rate for Youngest Veterans Reached Seven-Year Low in 20150

    The unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans reached an all-time low in 2015, as the economy improved and the federal government and private sector continued their focus on the issue. The 5.8 percent annual unemployment rate in 2015 for the latest generation of veterans marked a significant improvement over the 7.4 percent rate recorded the previous year and was only modestly higher than the 5.2 percent rate for non-veterans. Unemployment for post-9/11 veterans reached its high point at 12.0 percent in 2011 …