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January 2013 Archives

Social Security Administration chided for veterans' benefit delays

Georgia veterans who have been holding their breath for a response from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may soon be breathing sighs of relief. Senators Max Baucus and Orrin Hatch recently addressed the backlog of outstanding veterans' disability claims by calling for improved communication between the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the VA.

Rejected Social Security Disability claimants to get a second chance

Social Security benefit applicants in New York City's borough of Queens knew there was a gauntlet to be run if they wanted to get their payments. Five administrative law judges who hear appeals there were notorious for their treatment of disabled people seeking government assistance. The five demeaned and belittled applicants, questioning them so harshly that some were moved to tears. Now, thanks to a class action lawsuit, those denied applicants could get a second chance in court with a more impartial judge.

Amounts paid to disabled veterans doubled since 2000

It's no secret that war is expensive; reports on the astronomical costs of tanks, bombs and jets are fairly common in the media. But what is often not reported is the amounts owed to our country's disabled veterans. As our soldiers return from the Middle East, often after several tours of duty, many apply for disability benefits. The surge in disability applications has caused veteran disability costs to more than double in the past twelve years.

Research continues on Gulf War Illness

Gulf War Illness, or GWI, has always been a somewhat controversial topic in the medical community. It came to public attention shortly after the first Gulf War, when large numbers of former service men and women began to exhibit a wide range of bewildering symptoms. These symptoms included fatigue, muscle pain and impaired cognition, and they varied widely in severity.

Delta tries to make amends for mistreating wounded vet

Delta Airlines is trying to patch up its reputation after a double-amputee war veteran was humiliated by a flight crew described by another passenger as "hard as woodpecker lips." Because of his disability, the Afghanistan combat veteran was put aboard the Atlanta to Washington flight last, rolled down the aisle in a narrow aircraft wheelchair to the last row, banging into seats along the way. Two first class passengers offered their seat to the wounded Marine but the flight attendants refused to allow it because the doors were closed. Passenger outrage was palpable in the cabin and Delta was deluged with complaints when the story hit the social media.

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