by Robert Mitchell
Agent Orange exposure Compensation and Pension (C&P) Service has initiated a program to collect data on Vietnam naval operations for the purpose of providing regional offices with information to assist with development in related disability claims based on herbicide exposure from Navy veterans.
To date, we have received verification from various sources showing that a number of offshore “blue water” naval vessels conducted operations on the inland “brown water” rivers and delta areas of Vietnam. We have also identified certain vessel types that operated primarily or exclusively on the inland waterways. The ships and dates of inland waterway service are listed below. If a veteran’s service aboard one of these ships can be confirmed through military records during the time frames specified, then exposure to herbicide agents can be presumed without further development.
USS Carronade (IFS 1);USS Clarion River (LSMR 409); USS Francis River (LSMR 525);USS White River (LSMR 536); USS Ingersoll (DD-652); USS Mansfield (DD-728); USS Richard E. Kraus (DD-849); USS Basilone (DD-824); USS Hamner (DD-718); USS Conway (DD-507); USS Fiske (DD-842); USS Black (DD-666); USS Providence (CLG-6); USS Mahan (DLG-11); USS Okanogan (APA-220); USS Niagara Falls (AFS-3).
More veterans in government
President Barack Obama recently signed an executive order aimed at hiring more veterans to work in the federal government.
Under the executive order, 23 cabinet-level and lower departments and agencies will band together to form the Council on Veterans Employment.
The purpose of the council will be to advise and assist the president and the director of the Office of Personnel management in establishing a coordinated government-wide effort to increase the number of veterans employed by the federal government.
They will advise on how to enhance recruitment and training; serve as a national forum for promoting veterans employment opportunities and establish performance measures to assess the effectiveness of the council.
Dental: Veterans may receive one-time dental treatment if they were not provided treatment within 90 days before separation from active duty. The time limit does not apply to veterans with dental conditions resulting from service-connected wounds or injuries. Expiration is 180 days from separation.
Medical: VA provides a wide range of health care services to veterans, including treatment for military sexual trauma and for conditions possibly related to exposure to Agent Orange, ionizing radiation and other environmental hazards in the Persian Gulf. Generally, veterans must be enrolled in VA’s health care system to receive care. There is no time limit on this benefit.
Former POWs with osteoporosis
Effective Sept. 28, 2009, a presumption of service connection for osteoporosis for FPOW’s who were detained or interned for at least 30 days and whose osteoporosis is at least 10 percent disabling is established.
Robert Mitchell is director of the Saratoga County Veterans Service Agency. Contact him regarding veterans affairs at 884-4115.