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Veterans' Discounts
Use the link below to access all current discounts to veterans', active, reserve, and retired members of the US Military and their immediate family members. Two important pieces of information for this list. First, some stores offer discounts only at the owner’s discretion and other discounts vary by state. Second, many stores that give a military discount don’t advertise it. It is always worth asking a store whether they have one or not and to have your military ID on you.
 

 FOR ALL LEGION MEMBERS, FREE $1,000 AD&D INSURANCE

Sign Up Here ⇒   http://www.thelit.com/no-cost-legioncare


 

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Car Donations ............................................................................................

The Military Order Of The Purple Heart,  visit http://www.purpleheartcars.org/.  Tax deductible; cars need not be running; free and timely pick-up.  Your donations support wounded warriors and their families.  Purple Heart is chartered by congress and has been in existence since 1932.  Many car donation positions are staffed by disabled veterans.

Vietnam Veterans of America, 800-820-3195 or visit http://www.helpourveterans.org/. 100% tax deductible, any car accepted, free pick-up, proceeds benefit Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc.  Upon request, a description of programs offered by VVA and/or a copy of the latest annual report can be obtained from the organization at 8719 Colesville Road, Suite 100; Silver Spring, MD 20910. 

Caregiver's Program (VA) ............................................................................................

The Deparment of Veterans Affairs will send out more than $430,000 in stipend payments to nearly 200 Family Caregivers of Veterans in July. These Family Caregivers were the first to complete their Caregiver training under the program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers. The first payments to 96 recipients were issued 1 JUL. Family Caregivers will receive an average $1,600 in monthly stipend payments. The initial payments will average $2,500 because the first stipend checks are retroactive to the date of application. The amount of the stipend is based on the condition of the Veteran and the amount of care they require as well as the geographic location where the Veteran resides. An additional 80 stipend payments will be released from the U. S. Treasury on 8 JUL bringing the total to 176 Family Caregivers receiving the stipend in July.  “We continue to process and approve applications on a daily basis” said Deborah Amdur, VA’s Chief Consultant for Care Management and Social Work. “It has been profoundly gratifying to receive messages from Family Caregivers about the value of this program.”  Since 9 MAY, nearly 1,250 Caregivers of Veterans who were seriously injured in the line of duty on or after September 11, 2001, have applied for the Program. A core caregiver training curriculum is a required component of the program. This comprehensive training, which was developed by Easter Seals in collaboration with VA clinical experts, has received many positive comments from Family Caregivers.  In addition to the training, eligible Family Caregivers can also access mental health services and are provided health care insurance, if they are not already entitled to care or services under a health plan.  Veterans may review the criteria for eligibility and download the Family Caregiver program application (VA CG 10-10) at http://www.caregiver.va.gov. The application enables the Veteran to designate a primary Family Caregiver and secondary Family Caregivers if needed.  Caregiver Support Coordinators are stationed at every VA medical center to assist with coordinating the training or assist Caregivers in locating available services. Support for all Caregivers is also available via the national Caregiver Support Line at 1-855-260-3274. Caregivers of Veterans from all eras are encouraged to use the Website and Support Line to learn about more than two dozen supportive services VA offers to Family Caregivers.

Cemetery Medallions for Veterans.............................................................

          Veterans' Medallion Available for Order - New Option for Marking Graves in Private Cemeteries

Cologne -  Patton Cologne benefits veterans!.............................................................

Patton for the Army, Riptide for the Coast Guard, Devil Dogs for the Marines and Stealth for the Air Force:  a portion of proceeds from sales that Parfumologie has created for each branch of the armed forces are donated to the Veterans Administration.  The line of colognes was first released in 2009, but made news in August after the Patton cologne was mentioned on the Military Times news website.  Patton is advertised as a woodsy blend of lavender, citrus, coconut, cedar, sage, tonka bean, bergamot and lime.  The U. S. Army' has released the cologne as a licensed, official fragrance.

Email Access and Email Lists....................................................................

      


Enroll in the VA Healthcare System............................................................

        Click Here to Enroll in the VA Healthcare System  (Legionnaires see box area below)

Everyone should enroll.  Flu Shots are available if you are enrolled! 

Legionnaires Enroll This Way:  Take your DD214 to Green Street where you will find an American Legion Representative to help fill out paperwork correctly and handwalk it through for you.


 

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G. I. Bill ................................................................................................

                 

Military.com: Army


Benefit Alert for Army Veterans,


Your GI Bill will pay you up to $47,556.
 This money is not a loan and can be used to pay for a college degree or professional certificate.

Don’t let this money go to waste. Your GI Bill expires 10 years after separation. Start taking classes to move your career forward.

Find Military Friendly Schools Now.
 

Find Military Friendly Schools Now

 

HOUSING AND MORTGAGES FOR VETERANS & ACTIVE MILITARY............................................................................................

For a comprehensive consumer guide on housing and mortgages for veterans and active military, go to this website atwww.mortgageloan.com/veterans/ which covers what VA loans are, its benefits, how to apply for one, special protections against foreclosure, etc.  Take a look at it and see what you think.

JOBS UPDATE - NEW VETERANS CAREER CENTER WEB PLATFORM ...............................................................................

The American Legion and its allies in veteran employment and entrepreneurship have launched a new web platform to help those who served in uniform translate military skills to job skills, find employment, start businesses and make successful transitions.  Among the key features of The American Legion's Veteran Employment Center are: 1) a Veteran Job Search Tool, powered by Military.com, which helps veterans find current job listings near them. By entering a Zip Code, veterans can easily find job listings that fit their skill sets within a chosen distance from home; 2) a series of 10 custom-produced videos to help veterans start and succeedin business. The series, "Veteran Video Guide: Starting and Growing a Business," is sponsored by ADP and provides guidance from successful veteran entrepreneurs, including members of the Legion's Business Task Force; 3) a listing of American Legion-sponsored or produced veteran career fairs nationwide, with links to registration sites; and 4) links to important forms, sites and agency platforms that help veterans in the career search, including USAJobs.gov, the federal government's job-listing site, Department of Labor online tools to understand and calculate Veterans Preference points, and a VA Military Skills Translator.

Additional information in the site includes resume-writing advice from top experts, a portal to Military.com's benefits platform and headlines about The American Legion's advocacy on behalf of veterans seeking civilian careers. The platform,http://www.legion.org/careers, is one among a growing family of new American Legion web programs, and those soon to appear, dedicated to helping veterans find the support, services, and opportunities they seek.

Lung Cancer Answers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

HYPERLINK "http://www.lung-cancer.com"www.lung-cancer.com

Veterans are even more likely to get lung cancer than the general public because of exposure to a number of pollutants. Smoking and tobacco are the leading causes, but other causes include: radon, asbestos, beryllium, and others.

This informational site describes the causes and symptoms of lung cancer and the screening techniques that doctors use to diagnose cancer.
 http://www.lungcancer.com

 

Mesothelioma ............................................................................................

                 Mesothelioma and Asbestos Awareness Center

Veterans face many challenges in today's society. But perhaps one that many may not be aware of is the likelihood of exposure to toxic substances during their military service.  Among the most common toxin that veterans found themselves to be exposed to is the carcinogen asbestos.  If you are a veteran, it is important to understand where and how possible exposures may have occurred so that you may speak with your physician about your asbestos history and how you may have been affected.

The great majority of asbestos exposures affect naval veterans, though asbestos exposure is not exclusively encountered among members of the U. S. Navy.  Naval ships and shipyards were notorious for their use of asbestos and today many veterans are paying the price.  Asbestos was used to insulate and prevent temperature transfer in many parts of vessel construction, but especially around boilers and piping.  Those who frequently worked with and in the vicinity of these fixtures could be at risk of a harmful exposure.

Veterans who worked among our military's industrial complex may also be at risk.  Many military structures and installations were built to withstand fire and heat, a property for which asbestos products were particularly adept.  Those who worked around these fixtures prior to 1980, or worked extensively with older or damaged fixtures more recently, could also be at risk of a potentially harmful exposure.  There is no safe level of asbestos exposure and veterans and service men and women who worked in these sectors should consult with their physician about their asbestos history.

The majority of asbestos products (those containing at least 1% asbestos) were banned in the late 1970s by the Consumer Product Safety Commission because the clear connection between asbestos exposure and health conditions became impossible to ignore any longer.  Asbestos exposure has been linked to deadly cancers, including lung cancer, and mesothelioma.  For more information about asbestos exposure, mesothelioma, or mesothelioma treatment, please visit the website mesothelioma.com. 

Another good site comes to us through Kelsey Servi, Public Outreach department for the Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com, the flagship site of their organization and the authority on asbestos exposure and mesothelioma information.  Their main focus is working with individuals and their families to help them find local treatment centers, doctors and support groups, provide free informational resources, and help file VA claims.

A sister site is Pleural Mesthelioma.com, a site dedicated to spreading awareness about pleural mesothelioma, the most common form of mesothelioma cancer.  Veterans can visit to learn about mesothelioma life expectancy if they’ve received a mesothelioma prognosis.  Additionally, they’ve dedicated a portion of their website with information that can assist veterans affected by asbestos-related diseases to file for VA benefits.

A site which has achieved HON (Health on the Net) code approval is Mesothelioma Web; HON is a non-profit organization whose mission is to guide people to accurate medical information and expertise online and thereby to contribute to improved health care through patient empowerment and better informed health professionals.  For those affected by asbestos disease, the most informative page to link to would be the page answering many of the standard questions on mesothelioma, here.  There is also a page specifically for veterans issues.  Thank you to Caroline Shapiro, the cancer information coordinator for Mesothelioma Web, for providing this information.

Rachel Jones is the Awareness Administrator for Mesothelioma Prognosis.  She says, "...mesothelioma is one of the deadliest forms of cancer today. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most misunderstood diseases in recent times and continues to cause extensive harm.  However, our site, http://www.mesotheliomaprognosis.org, is an excellent resource to learn about the dangers of this disease.  Members of the U.S. Armed Services have not only dedicated their lives to their country, but are also unfortunately the most common victims of mesothelioma due to their increased risk of exposure to asbestos.  The military has used asbestos in various aspects of work and construction and ultimately affected close to one million individuals of the 25 million veterans in the U.S."

Pro Bono Legal Assistance ....................................................................................................

       VETERANS PRO BONO LEGAL ASSISTANCE

The National listing of Pro Bono Resources for Veterans is a legal directory of offices that will advise and assist
veterans and their dependents in legal matters. The directory can be accessed at
www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/publications/divisionforpublicservices/finalupdatedveteransdirectory.authcheckdam.pdf. This listing covers services available from the following:

• Stateside Legal Organization. Provides legal help for military members, veterans and their families.
(http://statesidelegal.org).
• ABA Law Student Division National Veterans Initiative. Duty Bound is a National Veterans Service
Initiative of the ABA Law Student Division. Duty Bound connects law students with attorneys who provide
free legal assistance on behalf of veterans and their qualifying family members who have an appeal pending
at the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. This web portal has been created to allow case-handling
pro-bono attorneys to select available law students to assist with client interviewing, case management,
research and writing, and advocacy tasks. Duty Bound will also enable law students and pro bono attorneys
to find resources supporting their work, and connect with other pro bono attorneys representing military
personnel. Pro bono attorneys and law students can connect to the web portal at
http://www.americanbar.org/groups/law_students/initiatives_awards/vets.html.
• Center for Veterans Advancement. Public Counsel's Center for Veterans Advancement, a national leader
in veterans' advocacy, is driven by its core mission to uphold our nation's promise to veterans and their
families. CVA provides legal representation to veterans and their families. To contact go to
www.publiccounsel.org/practice_areas/center_for_veterans_advancement for both local and national level
assistance
.
• The Veterans Consortium Pro Bono Program. Provides pro bono attorneys to financially qualified
veterans with meritorious claims when their benefits appeals reach the US Court of Appeals for Veterans
Claims. In addition, we provide training for the volunteer attorneys as well as support them with mentors and
materials once they accept a case. Refer to www.vetsprobono.org.
[Source: http://www.americanbar.org November 2014 ++]

 

Records....................................................................................................

       VETERANS HAVE OTHER OPTIONS FOR STORING AND SENDING RECORDS

HOUSTON, TX (October 21, 2008)  In order to alleviate the strain on the National Personnel Records Commission (NPRC), and Veterans Affairs (VA), U.S. Veteran Compensation Programs introduced today that veterans can permanently store their service medical records (SMR), legal records, or military records in their new, user-friendly, Records Archive Division (RAD). Too often we hear stories from veterans around the world that their service medical records have been misplaced or lost - that is unacceptable, stated Michael Clark, RAD Director. Using RAD, veterans can also gain access to their records with promptness and accuracy.  According to VA statistics, it can take a veteran up to six months to get their records after a request has been made.  Using our service, a veteran can receive their records in three business days or less, Clark added. For veterans working on a service-connected benefits claim, a Veteran Service Officer’s (VSO) access to a veteran’s service medical record is vital.  Getting civilian medical records is just as important.  Rather than contacting multiple agencies to request records, a veteran can make one stop and have their records faxed or mailed to the agency of their choice. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) entitles veterans to have copies of their medical records on request.  Through RAD, veterans have access to any of their personnel records stored with speed, efficiency, and accuracy.  A veteran can also request to have their records sent to any agency or provider in a timely manner.  Veterans may also supply contact information to their providers and have them fax records to RAD for immediate security and storage.  About U.S. Veteran Compensation Programs:  Launched in March 2007, U.S. Veteran Compensation Programs researches and distributes compensable benefits information to U.S. veterans.  Also, they are a major conduit for free services available to veterans.  Contact:  Beth Ann McGruder, U.S. Veteran Compensation Programs http://www.veteranprograms.com/  

Suicide Prevention Hotline and Email......................................................

The phone number for VA’s Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 800-273-TALK (8255). The chat line address is suicidepreventionlifeline.org

 

Swine Flu or H1N1.............................................................................

The only portals of entry for the H1N1 virus (or any virus for that matter) are the nostrils and mouth/throat.

In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible to avoid coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is. (The spreading of the virus from its point of entry).
       
While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu): 

       
1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat or bathe).
       

3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt waterhas the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method. 
 

4. Clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. Blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population. Sinus rinse kits are available at the drug store and relatively inexpensive.        

5. Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C (citrus fruits). If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption. 
                
6. Drink as much warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can. Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

Veterans Transportation and Community Living Initiative.............................................................................

The Department of Transportation has joined with the Departments of Veterans Affairs, Labor, Defense, and Health and Human Services to establish an initiative that will improve transportation options and mobility for America's veterans, service members, and their families.  This is an initiative to address the critical transportation challenges facing our veterans, military personnel and their families and people with disabilities.  Additional information and how to apply for funds can be found at http://www.fta.dot.gov/veterans.

Voting at VA Facilities.............................................................................

 VA CLARIFIES VOTER REGISTRATION REGULATIONS

The U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced it has clarified its policy on assisting veterans' voter registration activities, with particular focus on inpatients and residents of VA Community living centers, domiciliaries and patients with limited access to community voter registration resources.
 
The Department will welcome state and local election officials and non-partisan groups to its hospitals and outpatient clinics to assist VA officials in registering voters at VA facilities.  Such assistance must be coordinated by those facilities in order to avoid disruption to patient care.
 
"VA has always been committed to helping veterans exercise their constitutional right to vote, which they defended for all Americans while serving their nation," said Dr. James B. Peake, Secretary of Veterans Affairs.  "We've now established a uniform approach to helping those of our patients who need assistance to register and to vote."
 
The policy requires that information about the right of VA patients to register and vote, and other patients' rights be posted in every VA hospital, and that all VA patients be provided a copy of these rights when they are admitted to a VA facility.
 
Every hospital is now also required to publish a written policy on voter assistance, allowing patients to leave the hospital to register and vote, subject to the opinions of their health care providers.  Patients unable to leave the facility must be assisted to register and to vote by absentee ballot.
 
In their written policies, VA hospitals are required to establish the criteria they will use to evaluate requests from outside agencies to register voters, and to determine where, when, and how such registration activities will be conducted.  They will also develop procedures to coordinate offers of assistance from state and local governments and from non-partisan organizations, and how to work with VA's Regional Counsel offices to determine whether or not groups offering registration help are non-partisan, as required by law.
 
Voluntary Service Program Managers at each of VA's 153 hospitals will be responsible for implementing the new policy, and for providing timely and accurate voting information to veterans cared for at their facilities.  They will also obtain and maintain materials that are needed to assist veterans with voter registration requirements.

Wounded Warriors..................................................................................

 NEW SERVICE ANNOUNCED FOR WOUNDED WARRIORS, FAMILIES AND CAREGIVERS

DOD announced that the Military OneSource service has established a Wounded Warrior Resource Center telephone number and e-mail address for service members and their families, if they have concerns or other difficulties during their recovery process.
 
Service members and their family members can now call 1-800-342-9647 or e-mail militaryonesource.com 24/7 to request support.  Assistance provided by the resource center will not replace the specialized wounded warrior programs established by each of the military services, but it will offer another avenue of assistance for military facilities, health care services, and/or benefits information.
 
The term "wounded warrior" encompasses the entire population of wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans.