H.R.6416 – Jeff Miller and Richard Blumenthal Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2016
H.R.6416 – Jeff Miller and Richard Blumenthal Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2016 has been signed into law by President Obama, and is now Public Law No. 114-315. To read the text, CLICK HERE. To read the V.V.A. News Flash, CLICK HERE.
In the 2015 Legislature, through HB 2040, the YesVets campaign was created. As Washington employers sign up, hire a veteran, report it to the Employment Security Division, their business will receive a "YesVets" decal to display in their window. To read about this new campaign, visit www.esd.wa.gov/yesvets .
(update - WDVA Director "Alfie" Alvarado-Ramos announced that as of Nov 2016, 365 employers have signed up to participate in the program, and since Feb 2016, 524 vets have been hired through it!)
Department of Defense Extends Online Military Exchange Shopping Privileges to Veterans
"The Department of Defense announced a policy change that will extend limited online military exchange shopping privileges to all honorably discharged veterans of the military.
The veterans online shopping benefit will be effective this Veterans Day, Nov. 11.”
To read Release No: NR-010-17
Jan. 13, 2017, CLICK HERE
A B&O Tax Reduction for Businesses Hiring Veterans
…”Washington is home to over 340,000 working-age veterans. Yet, according to the Census Bureau, our state has a higher veteran unemployment rate (6.3%) than the national average (5.4%).1
To improve this situation, the Legislature passed a Business and Occupation (B&O) tax credit for employers that hire unemployed veterans.2 The tax credit takes effect later this year, beginning Oct. 1, 2016….”. Click here to read more.
The Red Badge Project
The Red Badge Project is a 501(c)(3) in the Seattle area. From their website: "The Red Badge Project supports Wounded Warriors in the journey to reconstruct their individual sense of purpose, understanding of self-worth, and place in community, as they discover and give voice to their unique stories." Partners are JBLM Warrior Transition Battalion, Task Force Phoenix (again from their site: "Each student of The Red Badge Project is a member of the Warrior Transition Battalion, which is an active duty Army unit specifically designed to support wounded, ill, or injured Soldiers through the healing and transitional processes"), UW Tacoma, and The Federal Way Veterans Center. Reading and watching the video about the program on their website, they are about helping those suffering from PTSD to tell their stories. To visit the website, click:
You Tube Video
The 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration has a "You Tube" video, less than five minutes, narrated by Sam Elliott To vies it, click here .
City of Bonney Lake Presents their Annual “SALUTE TO THE ARMED FORCES”
The City of Bonney Lake is presenting their annual “Salute to the Armed Forces” on Wednesday, 26 July 2017, at 1700, a free event, all are invited. Among the featured events, Santa’s Castle will have a table and will be collecting new, packaged toys for distribution at Christmas to screened military members needing assistance. CLICK HERE to view or download the event flyer.
Charles S. Murrell added to The Seattle VA’s "Wall of Heroes"
Chapter 102 Delegate Charles S. “Chuck” Murrell's name was added to the “Wall of Heroes” at the Veterans Lobby of the VA Medical Center in Seattle in November 2016, fopr his outstanding volunteer service.
Northwest Justice Project
From their website:
"Welcome to the Northwest Justice Project (NJP), Washington’s publicly funded legal aid program. Each year NJP provides critical civil legal assistance and representation to thousands of low-income people in cases affecting basic human needs such as family safety and security, housing preservation, protection of income, access to health care, education and other basic needs."
Visit their site at http://nwjustice.org/
and learn more.
Vietnam War Websources
from an e-mail from
Ron Morgan, Director
Vietnam Veterans of America Reg. 8
"This is probably the best search list ever compiled about the Vietnam War. This simply has to be shared with anyone who ever served in Vietnam or knew someone who served in Vietnam.
It would take months to look at everything this site offers.
Somebody went to a lot of effort on this site. It's one of the most complete that I've seen to date. Feel free to pass it along to anyone you think might be interested." Click Here
Affordable Care Act and VA Healthcare
As the Affordable Care Act (aka "Obamacare") takes effect, many of us have questions about how it will affect our VA healthcare benefits. The VA has a webpage describing how VA healthcare and the "ACA" work. Click here to read more.
Vietnam War 50th Anniversary Commemoration
A multi-year commemoration of the Vietnam War is underway. Click here for details.
WDVA Newsletter:"Veteran Voices"
The WDVA publishes a bi-monthly newsletter about veteran happenings and benefit updates, edited by Gary Lott. You can access the current issue, or select a previous issue from the index on the Publications page of the WDVA website or click here. You can also sign up to receive these by e-mail.
VA Dental Insurance Program (VADIP)
VA healthcare and CHAMPVA enrollees are now eligible to purchase dental insurance plans from MetLife and Delta Dental. Click here to visit the dental information page on the VA website.
Ken Burns NEW Series: “THE VIETNAM WAR”
Ken Burns has a new series due to debut in September on PBS. The title is “THE VIETNAM WAR”. KCTS-9 is hosting a screening at the Moore Theater in Seattle on 25 July, and again on 24 August at the Seattle Center Armory. CLICK HERE to read the invitation, and CLICK HERE to download the event flyer
Multi-Service Veterans Housing Project named for Bill Wood
from the MSC website: “A small focus group comprised of veterans (and some current duty service members) recently selected William J. Wood Veterans House as the name of the Multi-Service Center’s Veterans Housing Project being built on Pacific Highway near Dash Point Road in Federal Way.” Please CLICK HERE to visit their website and read more.
To read the Federal Way Mirror article, CLICK HERE.
Free Mental Health Resources: “Give an Hour”
from their business card: “Do you or a family member want to talk to someone about your post 9/11 military service? If you or someone you know would like to speak to a counselor, free of charge, who understands and will respect your privacy and confidentiality, contact Give an Hour at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.giveanhour.org“, or CLICK HERE for more info.
At a recent VAAC TH mtg., WDVA quoted the sad statistic of 233 Veteran suicides statewide in 2015.
Outreach And Resource Services for Women Vets
A local organization, OARS has successfully served over 1200 clients to date. Serving women veterans, they provide services ranging from guidance during the vet's military to civilian transition, to assistance in filing VA claims. To learn more about OARS, please click here to visit their website.
Veterans ID Card - 2017
"The Veterans Identification Card Act 2015 (Public Law 114-31) was enacted on July 20, 2015". The WA Department of Veterans Affairs (WDVA) has more on it. To view the page about the ID Card, click www.dva.wa.gov/trending .
Asbestos Related Diseases
Asbestos was used in building materials and as insulation for steam/hot water
generation and delivery systems in buildings, on vessels as insulatiuon and
composition materials, and on vehicles as insulation and, brake materials, as
well as other uses. Exposure to Asbestos fibers can cause certain health
issues. Click here to visit the VA webpage
addressing asbestos related diseases.
25 Jul 2017 – Screening of Ken Burns THE VIETNAM WAR and Panel Discussion – Seattle (VIEW “THE VIETNAM WAR” FLYER)
05 Aug 2017 - VVA Chapter 1109 3rd Annual Picnic - Skagit County