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  • Suicide among veterans highest in western U.S., rural areas

    Hope Yen (Associated Press) | The Denver Post

    Social isolation, gun ownership and access to health care may be factors

    WASHINGTON — Suicide among military veterans is especially high in the western U.S. and rural areas, according to new government data that show wide state-by-state disparities and suggest social isolation, gun ownership and access to health care may be factors.

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    Mental Health
    VA
  • New VA claims process promises decisions within 30 days

    Leo Shane III | Military Times

    WASHINGTON — Veterans Affairs officials on Thursday unveiled a new disability claims process they promise will result in decisions within 30 days, potentially shaving months off some veterans’ current wait.

    But that timeline doesn’t factor in advance work veterans must do on their own to collect relevant medical tests and service documents. And for now, the new process is only open to veterans looking to upgrade existing disability claims, not new cases.

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    Benefits
    VA
  • The Schultz Family Foundation awards $143,000 grant to NAVSO

    Grant leverages NAVSO’s human-centered design capabilities to drive improvements in veteran experiences.
     

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    Collaboration
  • The Suicide Contagion: How The Effort To Combat Veterans’ Suicide May Be Making It Worse

    Adam Linehan | Task & Purpose

    In May 2011, amid President Barack Obama’s troop surge, the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne Division began leaving Afghanistan after a grueling year-long tour. By the end of the summer, the entire division had returned home to Fort Campbell on the Tennessee-Kentucky border, greeted by a succession of parades and award ceremonies honoring the 101st’s sacrifice in some of Afghanistan’s most volatile regions, where a total of 131 Screaming Eagles lost their lives and many more were wounded. Chests were adorned with medals; families were reunited; alcohol flowed.

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    Mental Health
  • Transgender military service unchanged as Mattis announces study of policy implementation

    Shawn Snow | Military Times

    WASHINGTON — Transgender troops can continue to serve pending a study and recommendation from Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, the Defense Department announced Tuesday.

    The DoD has received Trump’s memorandum on transgender service members and will implement the president’s policy direction, according to a prepared statement from Mattis.

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    DoD
  • New Pentagon rules aim to broaden reviews of 'bad paper' dismissals

    Leo Shane III | Military Times

    WASHINGTON — Veterans advocates are hopeful that more veterans with “bad paper” dismissals will be able to upgrade their discharge status now that defense officials have released clearer guidance of how to handle a host of mental health and injury cases.

    The new memo, released Monday by the Pentagon’s personnel and readiness office, states that reviewers must take into consideration “conditions resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, sexual assault or sexual harassment” when deciding whether to upgrade a veterans’ status.

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    Benefits
    DoD
    Education
    Employment
    Mental Health
    Physical Well-Being
    VA
  • In Reno, Trump signs bill to overhaul VA appeals process

    Nikki Wentling | Stars and Stripes

    RENO, Nev. — Under a bill President Donald Trump signed Wednesday, veterans will have more options to appeal denied claims for Department of Veterans Affairs benefits – a process that now leaves veterans waiting an average of five years.

    Trump signed the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization bill on stage at the 99th American Legion National Convention in Reno, Nev. The Legion was one of the groups that supported the overhaul.

    During a speech before the signing, Trump touted the legislation as “historic.”

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    Benefits
    VA
  • 5 Things for Veterans to Know About Expanded GI Benefits

    Farran Powell | US News & World Report

    Lawmakers this month sent an expanded GI educational benefits bill, known as the "Forever GI Bill" to President Donald Trump's desk to sign.

    The Forever GI Bill, which passed the U.S. Senate unanimously, is estimated to cost more than $3 billion over 10 years.

    "It restores benefits to veterans who were impacted by school closures since 2015 and has special benefits for our reservists, surviving dependents and Purple Heart recipients," said Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin in a statement.

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    Topics
    Education
    Legislation
    VA
  • NAVSO Announces Grant Award from Robert R. McCormick Foundation

    MCCORMICK FOUNDATION AWARDS MEMBERSHIP GRANT TO THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF VETERAN-SERVING ORGANIZATIONS (NAVSO)
     

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    Collaboration
  • Report: More vets getting advanced degrees under Post-9/11 GI Bill

    Natalie Gross | Military Times

    When New York University Professor Liang Zhang started doing research on veterans in higher education, he wasn’t surprised to see that the Post-9/11 GI Bill generated a significant bump in college enrollment.

    But what he wasn’t expecting to learn as part of his new “Veterans Going to College” report is that the largest growth has been among veterans earning advanced degrees — particularly older veterans who already have a master’s.

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    Topics
    Education

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