Veteran voice

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Veteran voice
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Newspaper
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English
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Veteran Voice, LLC
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Port St. Lucie, FL
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weekly
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newspaper   ( marcgt )
newspaper   ( sobekcm )

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Began in 2012

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University of Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
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oclc - 854567034
lccn - 2013201395
issn - 2330-2267
ocn854567034
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lcc - ISSN RECORD
ddc - 305.9
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AA00017059:00084


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VOL. 2/ISSUE 33 THURSDAY, JUNE 19, 201435 cents House, Senate make it easier for vets to get care outside VA Editors note: This is an evolving story and there Following weeks of controversy over veterans not getting medical appointments quickly enough, the House and Senate passed companion bills making it easier for them to get third-party treatment paid for by the Department of Veterans Affairs when the VA cant deliver care in a timely fashion. The House unanimously passed the Veterans Access to Care Act on Monday, June 9. The Senate passed its companion bill on Wednesday. That vote was 93-3. Three Republican senators, including Alabamas Jeff Sessions, said they worried that the bill lacked enough accountability. Ray Kelley, national legislative director of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, said the measure builds upon a VA program in place since the middle 1990s that lets some veterans get third-party medical services, and is intended only to give the federal department time to build up capacity to treat the nations 22.5 million veterans. Not all veterans qualify to enroll in the Veterans Health Administra tion. We want that expansion to be temporary, Kelley said. Two years. Thatll give VA the time to expand its care. The White House signaled support for the Veter ans Access to Care Act, so its most likely President Barack Obama will sign it into law quickly after the House and Senate rectify differences between their versions. The VAs healthcare system is Americas largest. It has more than 1,700 sites serving about 8.8 million veterans annually. VA auditors recently took a one-day snapshot and found about 57,500 veterans waiting for appointments at its medical facilities 90 or more days after requests. It also found another 64,000 that had never gotten ap pointments requested within the previous decade. The damning audit followed weeks of growing allegations of veterans dying while lan guishing on secret waiting lists created to help administrators claim bonuses tied to 14-day waiting periods since 2011. The scandal drove former Secretary of Veter ans Affairs Eric Shinseki to resign on May 30. The president named the deputy secretary, Sloan Gibson, as acting secretary. Because the Secretary of Veterans Affairs is a cabinet position, the Senate will have About 13 percent of schedulers told auditors supervisors had demanded that they falsify reports to make waiting times appear shorter. Last week, the FBI opened investigations into some VA facilities that could end in criminal charges. The Veterans Access to Care Act may have little effect for Space and Treasure Coast veterans. The West Palm Beach VA Medical Center fared very well in the national audit. The Orlando VA Medical Center also had good numbers. On the snapshot day auditors used, West Palm and satellites had 67,885 appointments in their systems. Auditors found that 67,171 were scheduled within 30 days of veterans requests. In other words, nearly 99 percent of veterans got medi cal appointments within 30 days. West Palm did better in the audit than any other medical center in the VAs Sunshine Healthcare Network, which covers most of Florida along with Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and part of Georgia. Its one of 23 medical networks in the VA. The Orlando VA Medical Center and its satellites had 104,054 appointments scheduled on the snapshot day. Auditors found that 3,282 appointments were for Patrick McCallisterFOR VETERAN VOICEpatrick.mccallister@yahoo.com See CARE page 9

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2 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE West Palm and Orlando VA medical centers fare well in national auditThe Department of Veterans Affairs took a one-day snapshot and found about 57,500 veter ans waiting for appointments at its medical facilities 90 or more days after requests. It also found another 64,000 that had never gotten appointments requested within the previous decade. But the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center fared very well in a largely damning national audit the VA released on Monday, June 9. The Orlando VA Medical Center also had good numbers. Carl Blake, acting associate ex ecutive director of government re lations at the Paralyzed Veterans of Americas Washington, D.C., tion has sounded warning bells about delays in medical appointments for years and saw what it expected in the national audit. are surprising, as some would have you believe, but theyre disappointing, Blake said. Its tragic is what it is, but its not completely surprising. The VAs healthcare system is Americas largest. It has more than 1,700 sites serving about 8.8 million veterans annually. Auditors used May 15 as the snapshot day. The VA looked at the slightly more than 6 million appointments in its systems that day, along with conducting inter views with schedulers and others. The West Palm medical center operates Community Based Out reach clinics in Stuart and Fort Pierce, along with other satellite facilities. It covers seven counties St. Lucie, Martin, Indian River, Palm Beach, Glades, Hendry and Okeechobee. The medical center opened in 1995 to serve 30,000 veterans. Last year, it provided health care to slightly more than 64,000. On the snapshot day, West Palm and satellites had 67,885 appointments in their systems. Auditors found that 67,171 were scheduled within 30 days of vet erans requests. In other words, nearly 99 percent of veterans got medical appointments within 30 days. West Palm did better in the audit than any other medical center in the VAs Sunshine Healthcare Network, which covers most of Florida along with Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and part of Georgia. Its one of 23 medical networks in the VA. Wayne Teegardin, St. Lucie Countys Veterans Services manager, said hes not surprised West Palm did very well in the national audit. It does not (surprise me), just from the comments we get from our veterans, he said. Most are Teegardin said there are about 25,000 veterans in St. Lucie. The county runs two buses to the West Palm VA center on week days. Teegardin said the two buses carry about 20 veterans daily. Tony Reese, Martin Countys Veterans Services supervisor, was also not surprised that West Palm looked good in the audit. Ive always thought we were lucky in this area, Reese said. Were very lucky to have what we have in West Palm. Martin County operates a bus that takes about 10 veterans a day to appointments at the West Palm VA. The county has about 14,500 veterans. Reese said hes or other problems at the West Palm Medical Center, hed gotten numerous reports by now. I dont get a lot of complaints about it, he said. I think if there were problems, theyd get off the I dont get that. Mary Ann Goodman, public Beach VA Medical Center did well in the audit simply because get ting veterans into appointments has always been a top priority. Since we opened (1995), we have had a 66 (percent) increase of veterans, she said in an emailed response to questions. We have extended hours of operation for some of our clinics such as Mental Health, Audiology, and Primary Care. Group clinics are Good reasons to keep the VA intact Why dont they just get rid of the (expletive) VA and give veterans insurance cards and let them get their own doctors? Im hearing and reading those words a lot these days. Yeah, seems pretty simple, right? When a service member honorably discharges from the military, hand him or her a medical card paid for by Uncle claims. No denied claims to appeal. And its hard to justify the Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans Health Administration being the largest healthcare provider in the nation when news about secret waiting lists, dying veterans, FBI investigations and high-level resignations swirl like muddy laundry in a Kansas tornado. Theres that famous claims backlog, too. But therere really good reasons for keeping the VA deep in the medical business even at a time like this. So much so that in 2009 at the height of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act debate, we heard nary a word about it from the venerable veterans organizations, except they wanted to make sure that VA enrollment counted as satisfying the individual mandate. Which it does, by the way. If youre enrolled in the VA healthcare system, the Obamacare folks are happy to check the box. So, why are groups such as the Disabled American Veterans, American Legion, and Veterans of Foreign Wars interested in keeping the VA in the business of giving medical care to nearly 9 million veterans a year? Why do their national legislative directors spend a lot of time on Capitol Hill talking up the need to preserve and expand VAs medical services? Like all good questions, the answers are nuanced and complex. But, in a nutshell, it comes down to a couple things. Topping the list is the fact that vet erans, as a group, have unique medical issues and having a lot of them going to the same medi cal system helps uncover them. Some are simple to understand for example, hearing loss. Its more prevalent at younger ages among veterans than the general population. In a recent interview, Colleen Snead, chief of audiology and speech pathologist at the West Palm Beach VA Medical Cen ter, said that the VA gathers an unmatched and very envied amount of data about hearing loss, especially hearing loss among younger people and veterans. This allows researchers to identify hearing-loss trends among veterans and respond to them more appropriately. Were the largest purchaser of hearing aids in the world, so (companies) come to us for input when theyre developing products, Snead said. Another easy example of unique medical issues among veterans is the host of medical problems associated with Agent Orange. Had Vietnam veterans universally been seeing private doctors since the 1970s, it might have taken years, perhaps decades, longer to have spotted medical trends among those exposed to it. Yeah, there were the Agent Orange deniers for years, but today the VA has a growing list of presumptive service-con nected conditions connected to Agent Orange exposure. Thats because VA records help identify medical trends among veterans exposed to the powerful herbicide. The statistics need Patrick McCallister YOURVIEW Patrick McCallisterFOR VETERAN VOICEpatrick.mccallister@yahoo.comSee MCCALLISTER page 5 See AUDIT page 8

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VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE JUNE 19, 2014 3Indian River Colony Club residents receive donation awards from Vietnam and All Veterans of Brevard IRCC was proudly represented by three different groups at the Vietnam and All Vet erans of Brevard Ceremony on May 18, at The Vietnam Memorial Museum and Mili tary Museum at Merritt Island. The Army Wives of IRCC was awarded a plaque for their donations to the Veterans Transitional Center Melbourne. The award was received by Dee Moskowitz. The Marines Wives Nancy Carroll and Judi Bickmore were awarded a plaque for their donation to the Veterans Transitional Center Melbourne from the sale of The Soup Cook Book. The Womens Golf Association of IRCC was awarded a plaque for their donations to the Veterans Transitional Center Melbourne. The award was received by Donna Switzer. Photo courtesy of Indian River Colony Club FOR VETERAN VOICE 11703

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4 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE Theodore Wilson Publisher Steve Erlanger Partner Tammy Raits Managing Editor Debbi Denning Mary Kemper Patrick McCallister Shelley Koppel Mitch Kloorfain Eric Macon Graphic Designer Phil Galdys Donna Marinak 407-286-0807 (please note county in the subject line) (772) 204-2409 e Voice of Experience Vets-at-the-Mets salutes all those who servedIts a shame that the Tradition tators June 8, which was planned to be a special day honoring our veterans with the Vets-at-theMets day. All the Treasure Coast veteran organizations were there taking part in the salute, which was organized by the St. Francis of Assisi Chapter of the Knights of Columbus, Palm Beach Gardens. The Knights, resplendent with their plumed hats, opened the parade by carrying the Colors The American Legion Riders followed on their great motorcycles, and, as is usually the case, the St. Lucie West Centennial Navy They were closely followed by uniformed representatives of our veteran organizations carrying American Legion, the Disabled Veterans, the Korean War Veterans, the Vietnam Veterans, World War II Veterans and even the Or der of the Sons of Italy in America to represent Italian-American veterans of all wars. I can honestly tell you that those who came with their chil dren seemed to have the most fun; next to us, there were even of family and friends of the own ers of Franks Barber Shop, 1357 S.E. Port St. Lucie Blvd., Port St. Lucie. The important thing is that this is about all the veterans, and the various vet organizations that took time to be a part of this out ing. Also, we want to thank the St. Lucie Mets for backing us all. ( FOR VETERAN VOICE

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VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE JUNE 19, 2014 5 ed to build cases about Agent Orange medical conditions grew beyond dispute in the VAs records. That likely wouldnt have been nearly as obvious if the same data was spread among thousands of private medical records. Heres one you probably didnt know about: A November 2006 report by the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine showed veterans seem to develop Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis also known as Lou Gehrigs disease, after the famous base ball player who had to retire due to the con dition at a rate far above national average. The VA reported that Operation Desert Storm veterans appear to have a nearly twofold risk for contracting ALS compared to other former service members. In 2008, the VA made ALS a presumptively compensable illness for all veterans with 90 days or more of continuous ly active service in the military. Where did researchers get the piles of data needed to have discovered veterans suffer the catastrophic disease more often than those in the general population? At the VA. That same data will help researchers identify causes and possibly deliver preventative treatments to future service members and veterans before the onset of ALS. Theres another reason for the VA. It gives the American veterans community a common experience others dont have. Richard Dick Simmons, secretary of the British Ex-services Wheelchair Sports Association, enlightened me about how powerful that is at one of the National Veterans Wheelchair Games. He explained to me that in England, veterans organizations are a largely impotent bunch unable to get much accomplished besides a few games of billiards at pubs. For example, he said nothing similar to the Honor Flight Network will ever exist in Britain. Its veterans simply lack the visibility their counterparts have in the United States. He attributed the difference of social and political visibility between British veterans and their American counterparts to one thing the VA healthcare system. It brings veterans together. Like all bureaucracies, the VA is in many re spects a faulty, lumbering beast thatll never live up to its promises. But veterans are most likely far better off with it than without it. Veteran Voice. MCCALLISTER from page 2 ROCKLEDGE Brevard Achievement Centers president and CEO, Amar Patel, along with Patrick Air Force Base commis sary associate, Joel T. and his mother, Jean, will meet with key members of Congress on Wednesday, June 18, as part of the 2014 SourceAmerica Grassroots Advocacy Conference held in Washington, D.C., from June 16-19. The four-day conference AbilityOne Program, or people with disabilities employed at an AbilityOne federal employment site, and their family members to Washington so that they have the opportunity to advocate on their own behalf. The BAC team will meet with U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida and Bill Nelson, D-Florida, as well as U.S. Reps. Bill Posey, R-Rock ledge and Jeff Miller, R-Pensac ola, to discuss key legislative issues like supporting the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act, as well as opposing the Wag es for Workers with Disabilities Brevard Achievement Center to meet key members of Congress this week as part of SourceAmericas Grassroots Advocacy Conference held in Washington, D.C. FOR VETERAN VOICESee SOURCE page 8 Were proud to continue our history of supporting our countrys servicemen and women, past and present.The marks of General Motors, its divisions, slogans, emblems, vehicle model names, vehicle body designs and other marks appearing on this website are the trademarks and/or service marks of General Motors, its subsidiaries, MILITARY APPRECIATION MONTH:IF YOUVE SERVED, YOU SAVE.NOW EXTENDING OUR THANKS TO VETERANS FOR A LIMITED TIME.In honor of Military Appreciation Month, we are pleased to offer the Military Discount to all Veterans, Active Duty members, Reserves, and Retirees and their spouses of the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, National Guard and Coast Guard. This is your opportunity to save hundreds, even thousands, on the purchase or lease of an eligible, new vehicle, thanks to a special discounted price well below the MSRP. You can also combine this discount with most current offers to save even more.Go To: www.FortPierceBuickGmc.com Request an authorization number from the Program menu. Visit our dealership and drive home in your new vehicle. 5255 S. Highway 1 Fort Pierce (800) 777-8021Service Hours: Monday Friday 7:30am-6pm Saturday 7:30am-2pm Sunday Closed Up to a maxium of 3daysTAKING ADVANTAGE OF THIS EXCEPTIONAL OFFER IS EASY: WITH ANY SERVICE OR BODY WORK, ANY MAKE, ANY MODEL*! Come visit the home of the The All N ew

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6 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE Vet shares memories from crucible of Vietnam My story being a veteran is not about war or killing its how things in life can affect you. I went to Vietnam in 1966 with the Army 25th Infantry Division out of Hawaii. My job (MOS) was a clerk. I went to Vietnam by ship, and did nothing but think about the family I left behind. When we arrived, we went to shore by landing crafts (remem ber the movie Saving Private on the right side up against the door, and when we hit the beach, the door went down and so did I. What a way to start the day. Next we loaded into C140 air Nhat, outside Saigon. From there we took a Chinook helicopter to Cu Chi. Base camp at Cu Chi was a patch of ground without a blade of grass or a tree for miles in all directions. Supper was C-rations, in weeks (no mail on ship). We paired off with a buddy two halves makes one small, full tent. No bathrooms, no showers, nothing. Then as it became dark, the sun was going down, you let your guard down and BANG, gunon?! You are running around said, Dont shoot at GOD, go to sleep, we have men to take care of the snipers, as bullets are I asked myself, What am I doing here? The next day, you start building a base camp, putting up tents, buildings, bathrooms, shelters and barbed wire around the airaviation unit). I didnt see a typewriter the whole time I was there my job was everything else they needed me for. For six months, life went by fast, because there was so much to do. Our vehicles arrived by ship and we had to go to Saigon to pick them up. Then the choppers arinto base camp but remember, all around us the war was going on. Many timed boys were getting into the choppers to go on a mis sion and came back in body bags. Its impossible to get that out of your head. You just became numb to it. My way of coping with life in Vietnam was to pretend my family and friends were all gone. The people I worked and lived with were my family. I trusted these men with watching my back every day. I learned something: treat life like it could end any day. I saw napalm drops, bomb drops, chopmore mortar attacks than I can count. You name it, I saw it. But the best day was yes, Bob Hope and his people came to do a show. Their only goal was to make you laugh and forget youre not home. Those men and woman were my heroes, giving their time and holidays for us. watching some Vietnamese when a jeep pulled up and the driver said, Are you Russell? Get in. Youre going home. THANK YOU, GOD ... within 24 hours I was on a plane heading home, leaving all my buddies coming back a hero. WRONG. We landed in Travis Air Force en winter clothing and papers, and then I went to Los Angeles airport, where I was faced with people yelling baby killers, mur derers. What had happened to my coun try while I was gone? The airport security guard said, Dont worry about them, its just anti-war people. Its too bad if they used that energy to win the war, it would have been over in a year. Not one person said welcome back or great job. All the other men I was stationed with had been given the same treatment. We were willing to give up our life for freedom for someone else, and our own country turned their backs on us. Today, people say thank you for your service, when they learn youre a veteran, but coming home to an ungrateful country I asked myself, What am I doing here? FOR VETERAN VOICE See VIETNAM page 8

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VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE JUNE 19, 2014 7 PALM CITY The 22-foot steel beam stands erect on a pedestal aimed slightly north by northeast. Toward New York City. Toward the World Trade Center. About 100 gathered on Flag Day, Saturday, June 14 to help dedicate the World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial at the Cummings Library. Im grateful, Palm City resident Gerard Somerville said after the ceremonies. It kicks up a lot of memories. Somerville was a captain in the Fire Department City of New York in 2001. He was among the terrorist attack on Sept. 11 that year, and he spent eight months He said the Peter & Julie Cum mings Library, 2551 Matheson morial. U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Ju piter, was among the speakers at the dedication. Today we remember those we lost that day, and how our nation rallied together after the attack, Murphy said. Joe Ferrara, chief of the Martin County Fire Rescue, said he was word of the terrorist attack came. He said the group turned on news coverage of the event and visi bly went through stages of grief together. We must never forget the hero ism of that day, he told dedica tion attendees. Construction of the monument was a joint effort between Martin County and the United States of America 911 First Responders, an unincorporated civic group formed to provide fellowship for Fire Department City of New York, New York Police Depart sponders to the Sept. 11 attacks now living on the Treasure Coast. Somerville is a member. Dennis McKenna, Stuart, co-founded the group. Among other projects, USA 911 First Responders helped Martin County and the city of Mitch Kloorfain/chief photographer Palm City dedicates Sept. 11 memorial Patrick McCallisterFOR VETERAN VOICEpatrick.mccallister@yahoo.comSee MEMORIAL page 9 www.IndianRiverColonyClub.com/USmilitary Indian River Colony Club Call:877-484-6178 The Place Patriots Call Home 55 + Active Retirement Community I n dian River Col ony C lub 1 936 Freedom D r ive Vi era (Mel b ourne), F L 3 2 940Ready to start the next adventure? So many choices, with the time to use them. Golf, tennis, dance, craft, ne dining and over 40 clubs & activities of all kinds! Enjoy the lifestyle you deserve. Single family homes on 453 lush acres in Viera. Initially home to Military Officers, IRCC now takes pride in accommodating all those who served, devoted to the traditions of the U.S. Armed Forces. 11666

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8 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE being utilized for Mental Health, Nutrition and Smoking Cessation. We have added services at our Community Based Outpatient Clinics and our satellite Port St. Lucie Clinic. Additionally, Goodman said increased use IT systems has helped West Palm get to appoint ments quickly by allowing doctors to meet with veterans at different facilities over video-conference systems. Vic Diaz, co-founder and secre tary of the Vietnam Veterans of Indian River County, said alls not as roses and lollypops for Treasure Coast veterans as the audit would make it seem. Diaz is also a Veterans of Foreign Wars up on claims and enroll in the VA medical system. I have clients who need to get into a (post-traumatic stress dis order) program, because theyre so bad they cant function in society, he said. The VA has programs for that, but if you try to get into one in Florida, its a 90to 180-day wait. Teegardin said hes had no prob lems getting clients into the VAs St. Lucie County PTSD Clinical Team Outpatient Program in St. Lucie West. Diaz said that facility offers outpatient care. He said the two facilities in Florida that offer into. This one kid, he had to go all the way to New York State to get into the program, Diaz said. A lot of these guys self-medicate, going back to booze or dope, wait ing to get into the VA. The Sunshine Healthcare Network has eight hospitals and more than 55 clinics. In 2013, about 547,000 veterans had nearly 8 million appointments at its facilities. Auditors rec ommended additional review of medical centers in Gainesville, Bay Pines and Lake City, along with San Juan in Puerto Rico, the Community Based Outreach Clin ic in Sarasota. The Orlando VA Medical Center and its satellites had 104,054 appointments scheduled on May 15. Auditors found that 3,282 were for more than 30 days after the veterans requested them. Put another way, about 97 percent were within 30 days. Controversy about secret waiting lists and possibly dozens of veter ans dying while awaiting care has swirled around the VA medical system for a couple of months. The controversy led to former Secretary Eric Shinseki resigning on May 30. President Barack Obama immediately named Sloan Gibson as acting secretary. Be cause the Secretary of Veterans Affairs is a cabinet position, the next. About 13 percent of schedulers told auditors supervisors had demanded that they falsify reports to make waiting times appear shorter. In 2011, the VA started basing some bonuses on the number of appointments that were scheduled within two weeks of requests. online at www.va.gov/health/ac cess-audit.asp.AUDIT from page 2 Act of 2013. SourceAmerica and its partner agencies like BAC support efforts to modern ize programs and policies that increase the quantity and quality of employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities and efforts to strengthen the Fair Labor Standards Act including enhanced enforcement, penalties for violations and data collection. There is opposi tion, however, to H.R. 831, the Fair Wages for Workers with Disabilities Act of 2013, and any legislation to eliminate the principles of self-determination, the rights of individuals, or that would curtail employment opportunities for people with While we are grateful to our leaders on the Hill for strongly encouraging federal contractors and subcontractors to reach a 7 percent utilization goal with their hiring practices and set ting aside work opportunities through AbilityOne contracts, we still have a long way to go unemployment rate for people with disabilities, said Patel. According to the latest published report by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunitys Bureau of Labor Market Statistics, of the 32,044 Brevard County residents in the labor force that were un employed in 2012, 12 percent were people with disabilities. As a person with a disability that resides in Brevard County, for others like him in our com munity, Patel said. Because as any one of them will tell you, people with disabilities consti tute a very hard working labor force that every organization should consider employing. Nationwide the unemploy ment rate in May for people with disabilities was 12.7 per cent as opposed to 5.8 percent for those without disabilities, according to the U.S. Depart ability Employment Policy. in the U.S. has a disabili ty and more than 22 million families include one or more members with disabilities. In addition, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that fewer than 20 percent of peo ple with disabilities are in the labor force as opposed to nearly 70 percent of people without disabilities. Even more stagger ing is the fact that Census data shows that there are 9.4 million ties in the U.S. who could work given the appropriate opportunity and support. ityOne Program, visit www. sourceamerica.org. www.bacbrevard.com. SOURCE from page 5 As a person with a disability that resides in Brevard as any one of them will tell you, people with disabilities Amar Patel Center president and CEO in 1967 was more harmful than the war. When I see happy endings, or when todays vets get off a plane and everyone is there to welcome them home, I cry. I am glad you now see its time to welcome them home as he roes. My problem is for 47 years I have seen an ungrateful country treating Vietnam vets like Viet nam never happened. It did. I was there. Next time you see a vet from World War II, Korea, Vietnam freedom is a hero. I have come down with (compli cations from exposure to) Agent Orange and have many medical problems, but I was the lucky one. I made it out of Vietnam alive. A lot of my buddies did not. all your freedoms even today, and even for the ones not willing to VIETNAM from page 6

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VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE JUNE 19, 2014 9Locations for Veteran Voice retail sales St. Lucie County South Florida Tattoo Royal Palm Shopping Center 1717 South Federal Hwy Fort Pierce, FL 34950 (772) 465-0012 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Fort Pierce Central 3602 Oleander Avenue Fort Pierce, FL 34982 (772) 293-0330 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Port St. Lucie 1888 SW Bayshore Blvd. Port St. Lucie, FL 34984 (772) 807-5544 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Port St. Lucie 6911 Hancock Drive Port St. Lucie, FL 34952 (772) 466-1814 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Downtown Fort Pierce 317 Orange Avenue Fort Pierce, FL 34950 (772) 489-3977 American Legion Post 40 810 S US1 Fort Pierce, FL 34950 (772) 461-1480 Tobacco Emporium 223 Orange Ave. Fort Pierce, FL (772) 461-0655 Rinellis Yellow Tail 101 Second St. Fort Pierce, FL (772) 466-5474 Veteran Voice, LLC 1919 SW Macedo Blvd. Port St. Lucie, FL (772) 204-2409 Martin County Ocean Food Mart 409 S.E. Ocean Blvd. Stuart, FL 34994 (772) 220-4656 Papis Restaurant 333 S.E. Ocean Blvd. Stuart, FL 34994 (772) 287-2880 Chevron 2380 SE Ocean Blvd. Stuart, FL 34996 (772) 463-4605 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Jensen Beach 1650 Jensen Beach Blvd. Jensen Beach, FL 34957 (772) 334-1555 Mailbox Plus 1820 N.E. Jensen Beach Blvd. Jensen Beach, FL 34957 (772) 334-5562 Indian River County St. Lucie Battery & Tire Sebastian 1647 U.S. Highway 1 Sebastian, FL 32958 (772) 581-0605 St. Lucie Battery & Tire Vero Beach Commercial Truck Center 1893 90th Ave. Vero Beach, FL 32966 (772) 569-7629 Victory Center Military Store Indian River Mall Vero Beach, FL (772) 226-5316 Sebastian VFW Post 10210 815 Louisiana Ave. Sebastian, FL (772) 589-3405 The Pipe Den 1426 20th St. Vero Beach, FL 32960-3562 (772) 458-1154 American Legion Charles L. Futch Post 807 Louisiana Ave. Sebastian, FL (772) 589-8710 more than 30 days after the veterans requested them. Put another way, about 97 percent were within 30 days. Wayne Teegardin, St. Lucie Countys Veterans Services manager, said the Access to Care Act faces an obstacle no one seems to be discussing professionals willing to deal with the VA. In reality, the VA is not really quick to pay the doctors, so a lot of doctors are pulling out (of the existing third-party-provid er program), Teegardin said. Kelley said that last year the VA spent about $5 billion out of a $43.5 billion medical budget for sending veterans to third-party medical providers. He said much of that went to physical therapy, sleep studies, radiological work and colonos copies. In addition to authorizing about $35 billion for expanding the use of third-party medical providers, the Access to Care Act passed by the Senate would add money to hiring hundreds of new doctors and nurses at the VA, along with leasing 26 new facilities in 17 states and Puerto Rico. CARE from page 1Port St. Lucie obtain four large pieces of steel from the World Trade Center. McKenna and the county looked at a couple of places in Palm City to place the 2.75-ton beam before deciding on the library. In a previous interview, McKenna said one reason for the library is because it has large conference rooms avail able to host annual educational events on Sept. 11. He said the steel beam has awaited a home since 2011. Today marks the end of a long journey and a long mission, McKenna told the audience. Murphy presented the monument plaque to McKenna and the pedestal. It reads: In honor of the heroes and in memory of the victims of the World Trade Center attacks on September 11, 2001. The monument is at the parking lot entrance. Theres a smaller piece of steel from the World Trade Center displayed in Palm City at the Martin County Fire Rescue Department station at 3290 S.W. Mapp Road. MEMORIAL from page 7 OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 9AM TO 5PM Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum 6600 Tico Road, Titusville, FL 32780 Special Event Venues Available $1.00 OFF ADMISSION WITH THIS AD 3 Display Hangars Over 30 Aircraft Memorabilia Free Guided Tours Gift Shop C-47 Plane Rides Canteen $1.00 OFF Admission Cannot be combined with other offers. This coupon is not redeemable for cashWITH THIS AD11724 The subscription price of a newspaper does not cover the cost of producing the paper, so virtually all newspapers are supported by advertising. Veteran Voice publishes legal notice advertisements, as well as various retail ads, to support the publication of this newspaper. Our intention is to publish a quality newspaper of value to the veteran community at the lowest sustainable subscription cost.

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10 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE County Veterans Service OfficersSt. Lucie County, Wayne Teegardin Phone: (772) 337-5670 Fax: (772) 337-5678 veterans@stlucieco.orgDorothy J. Conrad Building(formerly the Walton Road Annex Bldg.) 1664 S.E. Walton Road, Suite 205 Port St. Lucie, FL 34952 By appointmentMon., Tues, Thurs, Fri 8:30 am-4:30 pmWed 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. St. Lucie County Community Services Bldg.(Corner of Avenue D and 7th Street) 437 N. Seventh St., Fort Pierce, FL 34950 Walk-ins Mon. and Fri. 8:30 a.m. 4:30 p.m. Brevard Veterans Services Office2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Bldg. B, Suite 102, Viera, FL 32940 Office: (321) 633-2012 Fax: (321) 637-5432 Mon., Tues. and Thurs., 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Wed. and Fri, 8 a.m.-noon Manager: Glenn McGuffieIndian River CountyJoel Herman Vero Beach 2525 St. Lucie Ave., Vero Beach, FL 32960 Ph: (772) 226-1499 Fax: (772) 770-5038Sebastian Square 11602 U.S. 1, Sebastian, FL 32958 Ph: (772) 589-6597 Fax: (772) 581-4988Martin CountyTony Reese, Veterans Service Office Super visor Nick Ciotti, Veterans Service Officer (772) 288-5448Veterans Services OfficeMartin County Community Services 435 S.E. Flagler Ave., Stuart, FL 34994 Office Hours: Mon-Fri, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.VA Life Insurance Ctr., Phil., PA 1-800669-8477 VA Regional Office 1-800-827-1000 VA Medical Ctr, W. Palm Beach 1-800972-8262 Pharmacy, VA Medical Center 1-800317-8387 Military Retired Pay Activities, Cleveland, OH (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force ONLY) 1-800-321-1080 Military Retired Pay Activities, Topeka, KS (Coast Guard ONLY) 1-800-772-8724 Survivor Benefits (SBP), Denver, CO 1-800-435-3396 Stuart VA Clinic (772) 288-0304 Okeechobee CountyVeterans Services office (863) 763-6441, Ext 5. Fax: (863) 763-0118.Orlando VA Medical Cente5201 Raymond St., Orlando, FL 32803 (407) 629-1599 or (800) 922-7521Telephone Care(407) 599-1404 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon. Fri. (800) 645-6895 8 a.m. 4 p.m. Mon Fri (321) 637-3625 Viera patients8 a.m. 4 p.m. Mon. Fri. (877) 741-3400 Weekends, holidays, evenings and nightsWest Palm Beach Department of Veter ans Affair s Medical Center7305 North Military Trail, West Palm Beach, FL 33410 (561) 422-8262 or (800) 972-8262 Telephone Care(561) 422-6838 (866) 383-9036 Open 24 hours 7 daysViera VA Outpatient Clinic2900 Veterans Way, Viera, FL 32940 Phone: (321) 637-3788 1 (877) 878-8387 Mon. Fri. 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.St Lucie County PTSD Clinical Team (PCT) Outpatient Program 126 S.W. Chamber Court, Port St Lucie, FL 34986 Phone: (772) 878-7876Fort Pierce Community Based Outpatient Clinic1901 South 28th Street., Fort Pierce, FL 34947 Phone: (772) 595-5150 Fax: (772) 595-6560St Lucie Community Based Outpatient Clinic128 S.W. Chamber Court, Port Saint Lucie, FL 34986 Phone: (772) 344-9288Stuart Community Based Outpatient Clinic 3501 S E Willoughby Boulevard, Stuart, FL 34997 Phone: (772) 288-0304 Fax: (772) 288-1371Vero Beach Community Based Outpatient Clinic372 17th St., Vero Beach, FL 32960 Phone: (772) 299-4623 Fax: (772) 299-4632IMPORTANT NUMBERS ... Veteran Voice is a weekly publication designed to provide information to and about veterans to veterans and to the broader community. Veterans are an integral part of their Florida communities, which currently have individual organizations of their own, such as the Veter ans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, the Vietnam Veterans of America and many other groups with a nar row focus, but no convenient way to connect to a wider population of veterans and to the community in general within a limited geographic area, their community. The mission of Veteran Voice is to publish a weekly source of information that will provide, in one place, a listing of resources available to veterans, articles about changes in policies or organizations affecting veterans and events of interest to veterans as well as articles about veterans of interest to the general public. Veteran Voice LLC is organized as a partnership of experienced newspaper executives with an interest in veterans and in the communities of Florida veterans and friends. Veteran Voice is a start-up intended to ad dress a perceived lack of information readily available to veterans on programs and policies affecting them and objective reporting of veteran affairs to the public. To our knowledge, and based on comments from lead ers of local veterans organizations, there was no media or website currently meeting this need until the launch of Veteran Voice. We hope you agree, and will support this publica tion with your subscription. Without subscriptions there will be a limited number of people we can help, without which this mission will not be realized. As part of our commitment to supporting local veteran communities, readers and subscribers. Please let us know what you think by emailing news@veteranvoiceweekly.com or mailing your comments to us at 1919 S.W. South Macedo Blvd., Port St. Lucie, FL 34984.OUR MISSION STATEMENTAND OUR OBJECTIVE11726 r f r n r t f b r r f r n t b f r n t n r r r r r r r b r r f r r r r r r r r n r r b r r r r r b r r r r r r r n r r r b r r r f r b r f r f r f r r r r r b r r f b r r r f r r r r r r r r r f r r t f r b r r r r r r r r r r r r r r r f r r r f r r r r r f r r r r r r r f r f r b r r r r r f r r r r r r r r r r 11659

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12 JUNE 19, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE 11725 SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!! Regular .................................... $18/yr ......... $12/yr PAYMENT OPTIONS Enclosed check payable to: VETERAN VOICE, LLC. #_____________________________________ SUBSCRIPTION/GIFT FORMMAIL SUBSCRIPTION PAYMENT TO: ___________________________________________ _________________________________________ ___________________________________________ _________________________________________________ ___________________________________________ _________________________________________ ___________________________________________Veteran Voice is a weekly newspaper for veterans, active military, their families and their friends.e Voice of Experience

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