Veterans-For-Change NEWSLETTER

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Week Ending Sunday, February 10, 2019
Volume 10, Issue 06

I still constantly hear from Veterans across the country regarding their claims and appeals, the length of time they’ve been waiting, or how many times they’ve been denied, how some have been denied and said they just give up, “what’s the point?”
Well I know it’s a hard path to go down, but please don’t quit, don’t give up, that is precisely what the VA hopes for and expects. And why I chose to re-run an article on the VFC website just to remind you, you’re not alone, the numbers are massive on both claims and appeals, and I am hoping that by re-running this article will strike some spark in each of you to keep fighting. (Leaked Document: Nearly One-Third Of 847,000 Vets With Pending Applications For VA Health Care Already Died)
This is also the reason why I constantly push for everyone, military, Veteran and civilian to call their reps in DC all the time.
No a few dozen people won’t make a difference, we seriously need thousands and thousands of people regardless of whether or not you feel your rep will listen to you, make the calls, send the e-mails, share it on your social media pages, copy and paste into E-Mails and send to your entire address book and ask each of them to do the same steps, then forward on to their address book list.
Just keep it civil, no foul language, no screaming, just plain and simple requests.
The idea is, provided we can get the thousands upon thousands of people doing the same thing at the same time (and I recommend every Friday) is that it will slow down operations in their office, and in many cases prevent your Rep from doing the one and only thing they’re good at, “LINING THEIR POCKETS” and will force them to take immediate, swift action to provide what we’re demanding and get it to the floor for a vote and passage, just so they can get back to “lining their pockets!”
Concurrent Receipt HR 333 (Retirement Pay & VA Benefits) is a huge issue going on for decades, this needs to stop and further down in this newsletter there is a piece on this issue and we all need to participate in this. And add to that a phone call to your reps asking their full support.
Keep in mind if you’re a victim of “concurrent receipt” you could be losing as much as $1,200.00 per month! Wouldn’t it be nice to get that much more per month than you’re getting now?
Also think about the Widows, this happens to them too! And they’re losing as much as you are! So help us get this to the floor now. We can’t wait another 2, 4, 6 or 20 years to resolve this.
Agent Orange is still on the top of the list too! Even though the appeals court upheld the claim that it also affects Blue Water Navy, Robert Wilkie still has a little more than two weeks to file for an appeal to the decision which would only further delay benefits and medical care being provided.
So when you make the calls regarding Concurrent Receipt, please also ask for their support on HR 299 
and lets get it passed in the House again, and when that happens need to burn up phone lines calling Senators and asking for their support and passage.
Again, we’ve been seeing articles pop up again on homeless Veterans. The sad part is the numbers they’re quoting are not nationwide numbers only regional or state numbers, and most would look and think of the numbers as a nation wide number and would be wrong.
We have several volunteers who make calls once a month to over 350 different organizations, health and human services offices, and state and local agencies who help homeless people. And the numbers we get greatly differ from those being quoted in articles.
One quotes 31,000 and that would barely cover California and Arizona combined. The numbers we’re getting are still so very close to 1.4 million nationwide.
So we’re still asking that if you would like to help the Homeless Veteran (and family, sometimes) then please make donations to the DAV (Disabled American Veterans). They could use gently used clothing, furniture which could be sold to raise funds, and of course always can use cash donations, all of these items are also a tax deductible donation.
We announce last week that we’ve officially closed all our Face Book Pages and are now officially on MEWE.COM for everything. So if you’re interested in following us on any of the various pages, all the links further down in the newsletter will take you there.
On behalf of our Volunteers nationwide and myself, we wish you and your family good health!
Jim Davis 

Alfred Procopio, Jr., v. Robert Wilkie: What Does This Mean for You?
(Washington, D.C.)–On January 29, in a 9-2 decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in favor of the veteran in Alfred Procopio, Jr., v. Robert Wilkie, finding the intent of Congress in the Agent Orange Act of 1991 was to extend benefits to all veterans who served within the territorial waters of Vietnam, 12 nautical miles from shore.
The VA has 90 days from the Court’s ruling to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court; and VA Secretary Wilkie has yet to announce how it plans to respond.
In the meantime, VVA recommends those veterans who think they may have served on a vessel in Vietnam’s territorial waters reach out to their local Veterans Service Officer to file VA Form 21-0966, Intent to File a Claim. If VVA is your representative, please go to Service Officer Locator on to find your local representative. If you do not wish to work with a service officer, you may fill out the VA Form 21-0966 form and submit it to the VA.
We recommend Blue Water Navy veterans submit the VA Form 21-0966 if they have never filed an Agent Orange claim or if they have been denied an Agent Orange claim. If you are a spouse of a Blue Water Navy veteran who died from an Agent Orange-related illness, we recommend you also file a VA Form 21-0966.
By submitting VA Form 21-0966, you preserve your effective date. You have one year from the day you submitted your VA Form 21-0966 to submit your claim for benefits. By submitting this form, you will be putting yourself in the best possible position while waiting to see how the VA responds to the Court’s decision.
To help your claim’s success, we recommend you start gathering evidence such as deck logs, service records, or anything else that could help prove the location of your vessel. We will keep you updated on suggested next steps as we continue to learn more information.

The Veterans-For-Change website has been under construction since day one back in 2009 and every day since then. The looks pretty much stay the same, but in the background constant improvement and change is being done to make our website the most user friendly “One-Stop-Shop” website to find almost everything you might have tried to find searching the internet.
Almost a hundred people have been involved; collecting web links to documents now houses on the VFC website, collecting thousands of web links for various issues, illnesses and benefits. Creating forums for all eras of service and two forums one just for men and one just for woman where you can go question, comment, share medical and personal concerns, what ever you’d like it to be.
We also have a forum with for Mental Health and are currently seeking a new Licensed Mental Health Worker, where you can seek help or just ask questions.
We average 1,841 hits per day, and downloads average 1,164 per day with a total 4,709,392visitors as of Friday.
If you subscribe you will have full access to the entire website and best of all it’s FREE of charge! You just need a valid E-mail address so the system can send you a confirmation E-Mail. Once received, click on the link to be authorized automatically.
• Documents Library with over 16,844documents on-line (Updated: 01/21/19) 
• FAQ’s with more than 1,600 FAQ’s and answers 
• Multiple Forums 
o Afghanistan Veterans 
o FMP – Foreign Medial Program 
o Gulf War & Desert Storm Veterans 
o Iraq Veterans 
o Korean Veterans 
o Men Veterans Forum 
o Mental Health for Veterans (Counselor Needed) 
o Political Issues 
o Suggestion Box 
o The Mess Hall 
o VA Hospitals and Medical Centers 
o Veteran Affairs 
o Vietnam Veterans 
o Welcome Mat 
o Women Veterans Forum 
o WW II Veterans 
• Job Postings 
• Memorial Pages (Updated: 10/30/18) (37 Added) 
• News (Articles On-Line: 8,182
• Polls 
• Web Links, more than 4,678, Added 20 New Links (Updated: 01/10/19)
If you have a submission for the memorial pages, E-Mail:

~Veterans-For-Change Makes Social Media Change from Face Book to MEWE~
Effective immediately, all social media pages that have been on Face Book for many years have all been moved to for a number of reasons.
Where you are the customer to serve and not data to sell.
Where you share your real life and celebrate, not censor, diversity.
We know most people don’t like change, however, this new Social Media Site, MEWE.COM has no advertisers, truly respects privacy and protects your security far better than Face Book ever could. They also have a fantastic customer service group who actually does respond to your messages, suggestions, ideas and more!
We hope you will join us on this new site.
NOTE: Effective 01/31/19 we will no longer be posting any information, news or updates on Face Book.

H.R. 303, the Retired Pay Restoration Act
On January 8, 2019, Representative Gus Bilirakis (FL) introduced H.R. 303, the Retired Pay Restoration Act. 
This bill would extend concurrent receipt authority to longevity retirees with service-connected disabilities rated less than 50 percent disabling. Under current law disabled veterans with longevity retirement from active military service who are also in receipt of a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability determination of 50 percent or higher may retain both military retirement pay and their compensation.
DAV strongly supports H.R. 303 as it would end the unfair policy of forcing many military longevity retirees to forfeit some of their retired pay in order to receive equal amounts of disability compensation from the VA. This legislation is in accord with DAV Resolution No. 104 and would eliminate concurrent receipt for all longevity retirees.
Please use the prepared electronic letter or draft your own to urge your Representative to support and cosponsor H.R. 303. As always, we appreciate your support for DAV and your grassroots activism in participating in DAV CAN. Thank you for all you do for America’s veterans and their families.
Take Action

Get Dental Coverage through TRICARE Dental Program
Are you keeping up with your and your family’s dental health, and dental options? During National Children’s Dental Health Month, take time to learn about the TRICARE Dental Program (TDP). Whether you’re eligible to enroll in the TDP depends on your status or that of your military sponsor. Not sure about your eligibility or how to enroll? Read ahead to find answers and take command of your dental health.
Read the full article here.

February’s Featured Song
Blowing In The Wind
LT Bobby Ross

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