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A Variety of Veterans News from a Variety of Sources
New York Times Van Hits Pedestrians Near a Mosque in London, Killing One. A van drove into a group of pedestrians early Monday near a mosque in London, killing one person and injuring 10 in what the mayor called a “horrific terrorist attack” that struck Muslims as they finished prayers.
Military Times Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet shoots down Syrian jet after it attacks U.S. allies. A Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet shot down a Syrian SU-22 on Sunday, giving the U.S. military its first air-to-air kill since 1999.
Associated Press About 4,000 more US troops to go to Afghanistan. The Pentagon will send almost 4,000 additional American forces to Afghanistan, a Trump administration official said Thursday, hoping to break a stalemate in a war that has now passed to a third U.S. commander in chief. The deployment will be the largest of American manpower under Donald Trump’s young presidency.
Task & Purpose Here’s What Marines Have To Say About The New PFT Standards. A lot of changes hit the Marine Corps’ annual physical fitness test this year: a sliding point scale based on age; pull-ups for female Marines; a rowing option for those over 46; swap push-ups for pull-ups; and the chance to take the test more than once. Task & Purpose reached out to some of the devil dogs who recently took the PFT to find out how the changes are impacting their performances.
C4ISRNET CNO: It’s ‘imperative’ the Navy speeds up to keep up. To maintain a decisive edge over the enemy the Navy must accelerate its operations and how it develops as a service, particularly when it comes to dealing with big data, according to top naval leadership.
Politico: 5 things trump did while you weren’t looking: Week 2. 4. VA civil service reforms heads to Trump’s desk. For years, Congress has tried to reform the rules for firing workers at the Department of Veterans Affairs, having grown frustrated at the difficulty of removing employees responsible for the scandal at VA hospitals in 2014, which eventually led to the resignation of Secretary Eric Shinseki.
The Daily Signal: Trump Administration Keeps Obama LGB Policies at Pentagon, Other Agencies. The Department of Veterans Affairs put up three large LGBT Pride Month posters in its central office in Washington. The agency printed 150 bulletins to hand out at an event scheduled June 22 at VA headquarters, Sterling Atkins, the VA’s diversity and inclusion specialist, told The Daily Signal.
Government Executive: Agency Leaders Backtrack From Some of Trump’s Proposed Budget Cuts. In another hearing this week, Veterans Affairs Department Secretary David Shulkin completely retreated from a proposed cut in his budget. Trump’s budget proposal would eliminate a benefit for veterans unable to work due to service-related injuries once they become eligible for Social Security. The proposal was met with significant pushback from lawmakers and veterans groups alike.
The Gazette (Military Update): VA reverses course on two items that drew congressional critics. Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin made two surprise announcements Wednesday before the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee that should relieve some financial stress for more than 600,000 veterans. First, Shulkin said he was dropping VA’s appeal of the Staab case decided last year by the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.
The Huffington Post: You Can’t Pour From an Empty Cup: Supporting Military caregivers. “Caregiving” seems like such a formal word for something that we’d all do for the people we love. As Mary Ward describes it, “A caregiver to me meant someone who was paid to come in and provide services.” Melanie Swoboda, caregiver to her husband Joe, a U.S. Army Veteran, agrees. “It’s difficult for us who love our spouse so much to identify as caregivers,” she said.
Military Times: VA still planning to round down benefit payouts. White House officials this week backed away from one controversial veterans benefits cut but are sticking with a similar plan to trim other payouts to help balance the budget. On Wednesday, Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin told senators that the administration is looking to drop plans to radically overhaul his department’s Individual Unemployability benefit, a move that would save more than $3 billion but strip up to $20,000 from 210,000 elderly disabled veterans.
Stars and Stripes: VA Secretary: Money for Choice program will ‘dry up’ by mid-August. Money is quickly and unexpectedly running out for a program that allows veterans to seek health care outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs, and VA Secretary David Shulkin is urging Congress to fix it. In March, approximately $2 billion remained in the Veterans Choice Program, which was created following the 2014 wait-time scandal in order to allow veterans to seek outside health care.
Stars and Stripes: IVF coverage for wounded Vets preserved in House VA funding bill. A Department of Veterans Affairs funding bill sent to the House this week includes a measure extending coverage for fertilization treatments or adoption services for wounded veterans wanting to start families. Despite opposition from conservatives, Congress passed a measure last September allowing the VA to cover in vitro fertilization costs – but with limitations.
The Tennessean: How to cure soldiers’ invisible wounds. As Veterans affairs Secretary David Shulkin remarked during BRAIN TRUST 2017 at Harvard’s Medical School, “While VA is uniquely positioned to contribute to the care of veterans with traumatic brain injury, we’re able to accomplish so much more when we work strategically with our private and public-sector partners. We look forward to working with our partners to improve care for veterans — as well as all Americans — affected by brain-related injuries.”
USA Today (Democrat & Chronicle, Video): Q&A: Veteran suicide hotline now answers 9 of 10 calls in 8 seconds. A 10-year-old suicide hotline designed to assist veterans at their deepest moments of despair has taken heavy criticism recently following a trio of highly critical government reports that questioned answer times, staff preparedness and quality assurance.
Democrat & Chronicle (Video): Exclusive: VA discusses improvements to Veterans suicide hotline. The 10-year-old suicide hotline designed to assist U.S. military veterans at their deepest moments of despair has taken heavy criticism recently following a trio of highly critical government reports that questioned the Veterans Crisis Line’s answer times, staff preparedness and quality assurance.
WTVD (ABC-11, Video): Governor Roy Cooper at forefront of opioid struggle. Sec. David Shulkin of the Department of Veteran’s Affairs said, “The opioid crisis is ruining lots of people’s lives across America. In the VA, my top clinical priority is to reduce veteran suicides. And when you look at the overlap with substance abuse and opioid abuse, it’s really clear.”
WSB (ABC-2, Video): New report finds sweeping mismanagement at Atlanta VA hospital. A new inspector general report shows sweeping mismanagement at Atlanta’s VA hospital. Channel 2 investigative reporter Aaron Diamant obtained a copy of the reports that show concerns ranging from safety to sanitation at the DeKalb County facility. “It’s very distressing,” Sandra Petit told Diamant. “I wish that they would push toward having integrity at all levels.”
The Washington Times (AP): Most new foreclosures around Fort Hood tied to VA home loans. More than half of new foreclosures in 2016 around the military post Fort Hood were tied to Veterans Affairs home loans. The Killeen Daily Herald reports (http://bit.ly/2sEnCjx ) that about 67 percent of all new foreclosures in Bell County were tied to the zero-percent-down mortgages for qualified veterans and active-duty soldiers.
Military Times Warrior Games prepares for big-city debut in Chicago. The Navy officer in charge of this year’s Warrior Games hopes the amenities and attractions offered by the event’s first big-city host, Chicago, will improve the experience for the hundreds of athletes and caregivers set to participate.
The Washington Times (AP): Former VA nurse sentenced to probation for theft. Federal prosecutors say a former nurse at the Wilmington Veterans Affairs Medical Center was sentenced to three years’ probation for stealing more than $22,000 from a disabled veteran. Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Delaware David Weiss announced Saturday that Alexander Kudla was sentenced after pleading guilty to wire fraud.
American Legion Post 328, Southfield, Michigan Listing of Current Events in and around the Metro Detroit Area for and about Veterans, for the period June 15 -30, 2017. http://www.legionpost328.org/events.html Sent in by our fellow Veteran Tim Wirkus. Thanks Tim!
Federal Business Council, Inc. (FBC) List of remaining Industry Outreach Events for CY 2017.
Corporate Gray Military-Friendly Job Fair – June 22, 2017, Springfield, VA. You are invited to attend the June 22, 2017, Corporate Gray Military-Friendly Job Fair and meet face-to-face with representatives from Lockheed Martin, Booz Allen Hamilton, CSRA, National Security Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Leidos, MillerCoors, New York Life, AECOM, PenFed, Fulcrum IT, YRCI, LMI, and more! For more information and to register for the event, visit www.corporategray.com/jobfairs/385. By pre-registering and uploading your resume, you’ll receive the job fair employer directory in advance, and give the participating companies early access to your credentials. Also, so Flyer here…
2017 Virginia Women Veterans Summit, June 22 – 23, 2017, Chesapeake, VA. This event brings together Veterans, employers, community leaders and government agencies from federal, state, and local levels to raise awareness about the services and benefits offered specifically for women veterans through expert presenters, panel discussion and exhibits. The conference will feature speakers such as Dorothy McAuliffe, First Lady of Virginia (Invited) and Deshauna Barber, Miss USA 2016, U.S. Army Reserve Captain and more! The Virginia Department of Veterans Services encourages women veterans who have, currently are, or will be transitioning into civilian life to register for this event. If you do not meet this qualification, kindly respect those who do by not registering for this event. Registration for this event is required. For details and to sign up, go here…
Objective Rally Point (ORP). Tuesday, June 27, 2017, 7:15 AM – 9:00 AM, Army-Navy Country Club, 1700 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, VA 22202. You are invited to join us for our monthly Veteran networking breakfast on Tuesday, June 27, 2017. ORP is a forum for military Veterans in business and those who support them, or wish to team with them, to meet and connect. Don’t miss out on an opportunity to network with other Veterans committed to success in business. Although the focus of ORP is on the connections made between and with Veterans, we do have a presentation each month. This month we have as our speaker Mark Amtower. Mark is a consultant, speaker, industry spokesperson, business best-selling author, columnist and radio host. He is among the most recognized and quoted professionals in the government market. His LinkedIn profile was selected as one of the seven best (out of 50 million) in the 2009 contest, Rock the World with Your Online Presence. He advises small, medium and large companies on all facets of marketing to the government. He specializes in helping companies develop thought leadership positions in a defined niche and leveraging social media to gain targeted visibility in the government contracting market. Cost is $35.00. Full Breakfast provided. For more information and to register:
Non Commissioned Officers Association Annual Conference – July 11 -14, 2017. The Golden Nugget, Las Vegas, NV. Go here for more information and to register for this event: https://www.ncoaconference.org/
Mount Vernon Celebrates Purple Heart Day – Monday, August 7, 2017. You are cordially invited to celebrate National Purple Heart Day at George Washington’s Mount Vernon. It is our honor to have you join us as we commemorate the oldest military decoration in the United States at the beloved home of its founder. Here is information you might find helpful in planning your visit. http://us2.campaign-archive1.com/?u=2313d2141f19dbc004908589e&id=04795fbcf8&e=
14th Annual Elite SDVOB National Conference, August 16 – 18, 2017, Orlando, FL. Convention website here: http://www.sdvobconference.com/ Go here for Hotel Information and Reservations: