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Mon Sep 20, 2021, 08:40 PM

VA tells veterans discharged under 'don't ask, don't tell' they are eligible for all VA benefits

Source: CNN

The Veterans Affairs Department issued guidance stating military service members who were discharged because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or HIV status under the "don't ask, don't tell" policy are eligible for all Veterans Affairs benefits.

Assistant Secretary in the Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department of Veterans Affairs Kayla Williams announced the guidance during a virtual White House event held on the tenth anniversary of the repeal of the policy.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough issued guidance to veterans benefits administrator adjudicators that military service members who have an "other than honorable discharge due solely to their sexual orientation, gender identity or HIV status should be considered veterans who may be eligible for VA benefits," Williams said during the virtual event.

This allows veterans who were discharged because of their gender identity, sexual orientation or HIV status to receive the full range of veterans' benefits including veteran readiness and employment benefits, home loan guaranty, compensation and pension benefits, health care, homeless programs and burial benefits, a blogpost from Williams about the change said.

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/20/politics/va-dont-ask-dont-tell-anniversary/index.html?utm_term=link&utm_medium=social&utm_content=2021-09-20T20%3A34%3A04&utm_source=twCNNp

17 replies, 1027 views

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Reply VA tells veterans discharged under 'don't ask, don't tell' they are eligible for all VA benefits (Original post)
LetMyPeopleVote Sep 20 OP
George II Sep 20 #1
Biophilic Sep 20 #2
blm Sep 20 #3
PoindexterOglethorpe Sep 20 #4
monkeyman1 Sep 20 #5
babylonsister Sep 20 #6
madville Sep 20 #7
mountain grammy Sep 20 #8
marble falls Sep 21 #9
Behind the Aegis Sep 21 #10
LetMyPeopleVote Sep 21 #11
Hekate Sep 21 #12
malthaussen Sep 21 #13
Bayard Sep 21 #14
LetMyPeopleVote Sep 21 #15
jmowreader Sep 21 #16
Behind the Aegis Sep 21 #17

Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 08:50 PM

1. President Biden continues. That's all.

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 08:58 PM

2. This is as it should be. Finally. Sigh. nt

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 09:04 PM

3. Good

Fair is fair

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 09:16 PM

4. Wow! Excellent!

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 09:23 PM

5. ABOUT DAMN TIME ! ALL VETERANS ARE EQUAL !

THIS SHOULD NOT HAVE EVEN BEEN A DAMN ISSUE ! WHEN COME'S TO VETERANS , NON-VETERAN'S POLITICIAN 'S NEED TO STAY OUT OF US SUCKER'S & LOSER'S AFFAIR'S ! GET THE HINT -TFG ?

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 09:39 PM

6. Great news!! nt

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 11:01 PM

7. Great that they are eligible to apply for benefits

Of course anyone that has dealt with the VA knows that being "eligible" for benefits and applying for and being awarded some of those benefits are two entirely different things. They'll at least have the opportunity now, welcome to the game.

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Mon Sep 20, 2021, 11:26 PM

8. Best news I've seen today.

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 12:06 AM

9. About freaking time. I wonder how many we lost waiting close to 24 years.

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Response to marble falls (Reply #9)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 12:11 AM

10. Given AIDS, suicides, and other health concerns, I am guessing the numbers are high.



More than 13,000: The number of gay and lesbian service men and women have been discharged from military service since 1993. Thousands more have decided not to reenlist due to the policy.

source

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 01:55 AM

11. This makes me smile

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 04:40 AM

12. This is the answer to an unspoken prayer, that this wrong would be righted

At last

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 10:43 AM

13. Good, they ought to be.

Barbaric law.

-- Mal

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 12:20 PM

14. About time

Biden continues to right wrongs.

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 01:38 PM

15. MADDOWBLOG On key DADT anniversary, discharged veterans become eligible for benefits

This makes me smile https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/key-dadt-anniversary-discharged-veterans-become-eligible-benefits-n1279716

It was nearly three decades ago when the Clinton administration, in the clumsy pursuit of some kind of compromise, created the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy for openly gay Americans who volunteered to serve in the military. To put it mildly, it was not altogether effective, and thousands of servicemen and women were discharged unfairly.

Yesterday, as The New York Times reported, the Biden administration's Department of Veterans Affairs issued new guidance, making veterans who were discharged under the old policy eligible for benefits.

In a blog post on the V.A.'s website, Kayla Williams, the assistant secretary for public affairs in the V.A.'s Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs, said that veterans who were given other than honorable discharges based on homosexual conduct, gender identity or H.I.V. status "are considered veterans" who may be eligible for all V.A. benefits. The "other than honorable" discharge blocked tens of thousands of veterans from obtaining the full range of services and care.


Williams, herself a bisexual veteran, explained, "L.G.B.T.Q.+ veterans are not any less worthy of the care and services that all veterans earn through their service, and V.A. is committed to making sure that they have equal access to those services."

The Times report added, "Those affected by the policy may now qualify for benefits including guaranteed home loans, compensation and pension, health care, housing assistance and burial benefits, barring any statutory or regulatory issue with their military record."

The news was welcome, but it was also well timed. It was 10 years ago yesterday when the Pentagon formally ended enforcement of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Original post)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 08:30 PM

16. Half a loaf is better than none, but this is a half-loaf

They need to next extend the same benefits to all the veterans discharged under Chapter 15 (or its equivalent in the other services) before DADT was enacted. That was back when the Army DID ask whether you were gay.

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Response to jmowreader (Reply #16)

Tue Sep 21, 2021, 08:39 PM

17. I think it is anyone who discharged under the "homosexual conduct" dismissal.

I think using the term DADT is just a marker of sorts.

In a blog post on the V.A.'s website, Kayla Williams, the assistant secretary for public affairs in the V.A.'s Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs, said that veterans who were given other than honorable discharges based on homosexual conduct, gender identity or H.I.V. status "are considered veterans" who may be eligible for all V.A. benefits. The "other than honorable" discharge blocked tens of thousands of veterans from obtaining the full range of services and care. source


That reads to me as if it is any military personnel who was let go because they were GLBT. It just so happens, this announcement comes 10 years after the end of DADT.

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