Thursday, January 26, 2017

Veterans With Bad Discharges Get Fighting Chance

Tampa, Florida Veterans Lawyer Comments Need for Veterans to be Honorably Discharged
Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire)
January 26, 2017

Many veterans who were diagnosed with mental problems or traumatic brain injury have received less-than-honorable discharges. But such a discharge can result in the denial of veterans’ benefits, thereby causing these veterans to become homeless, imprisoned, develop substance abuse or commit suicide.

In an effort to assist these veterans, the Vietnam Veterans Association of America wrote President Obama asking him to pardon all post-9/11 veterans who received less-than-honorable discharges without the due process of a court-martial. They are making the same request of President-elect Donald Trump.

Prominent Tampa, Florida veterans lawyer David Magann says, “Veterans who have received less-than-honorable discharges because they suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or other mental illnesses are entitled to receive an honorable discharge.” “They should not lose their Veterans Affairs health benefits or GI bill education benefits.”

As reported in Shelbyville Daily Union, one such victim of this policy is Kristofer Goldsmith, who enlisted in the army a short time after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In a little over two years, he was promoted to sergeant, and spent a full year in Baghdad. However, upon his return home, he had to drink in order to sleep, and he spent time in isolation so he would not hurt his family and friends in the event he had an abrupt fit of anger. Then, when he attempted to commit suicide, the Army gave him a less-than-honorable discharge for severe misconduct. He was not found guilty by a court marshal.
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