Written by Antoinette Segar SSG retired
Amended by Patrick G. Putze, retired USAF on June 16, 2014.
To President Barrack H. Obama, Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces:
On behalf of All Chapter 61 Military Disabled Retirees — those defined under U.S. Code, Title 10, Subtitle A, Part II, Chapter 61 as U.S. Armed Services veterans medically retired with less than 20 years of active duty service, and thus, involuntarily forced out of their military careers earlier than anticipated because of service-connected injuries or illnesses incurred in the line of duty — WE, as a unified and substantial group, respectfully request that you exercise your due authority by way of an Executive Order to remedy current discrimination with just rationalization:
Justification: On May 7, 2014, The 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), along with H.R. 333 — Disabled Veterans Termination Act, both failed to include any legislative procedures concerning the absolutely critical issue of allowing Chapter 61 Military Disabled Retirees to receive Concurrent Receipt and Disability Pay. These aforementioned veterans, with less than 20 years of active duty military service, were forced from their military careers due to service-connected-injuries. As you must know by now, we Chapter 61 retirees are the last group remaining hopeful of the fulfillment of your original campaign promises to correct these flaws in the Concurrent Receipt Disability Pay system restructuring. We are the ONLY REMAINING ENTITY continually required to waive our promised and earned military retirement pay in order to receive Veterans Administration Disability Pay — all this owing to an extremely antiquated, outmoded, and unjust 19th century law. For every dollar we receive in disability pay, we must forfeit equal amounts in retirement pay. No other group in government service is discriminated against in this fashion.
Many of our brothers and sisters in arms, Chapter 61 Military Disabled Retirees with less than 20 years of active duty service have written to you, as not only the Commander-In-Chief, but also the President of these United States elected by the people. As well, we have written hundreds — or perhaps thousands — of letters to our elected State Representatives because there are not enough Co-Sponsor(s) to bring HR 333 (including Chapter 61 Military Disabled Retirees, Veterans with less than 20 years of active service) to the Congressional floor in order to be heard. A dozen-plus Executives Orders have been utilized by you in 2014. Surely, you would agree that an Executive Order to Phase-In CRDP to ALL Chapter 61 Military Disabled Retired Veterans too might be worthy of such a task. Please remember your 2008 Campaign pledge to extend concurrent receipt to all disabled military retirees, and also your recent comments during the 2014 State of the Union Address that “you do not intend to wait if Congress doesn’t move forward on your priorities in 2014,” to which they have not.
The following daily issues directly affect Chapter 61 Disabled Retirees veterans with less than 20 years of career services when we are denied our CRDP and our Military Retirement Pay:
Loss of Dignity — we are not able to provide for our families as when serving our Country.
Unemployment = Poverty for our families — many of us cannot work due to service-connected-disability and the ongoing problem in finding employment is equally as commensurate.
Many are not able to maintain adequate health benefit payments for family due to the limitations of a single income source via VA Disability Pay.
Home foreclosures, rental evictions, veterans with families are becoming homeless at alarming rates unheard of in the past.
We are not able to provide financial assistance to our children attending college in attempting to ensure the might secure a better future for themselves.
These are just to name a few of the egregious problems that plague this patriotic group who once chose to serve these United States as brothers in arms, only to see careers cut short by unforeseeable reasons that were no fault of their own.
With all of this said, I apologize for venting. #KeepYourPromise.
May God continue to bless & favor your Presidency.
For decades, disabled service members have sought legislation providing full relief from a statute requiring a dollar-for-dollar offset of military retired pay for VA disability compensation. Although Congress has made progress towards fixing much of this unfair offset, more than 623,000 disabled retirees still fund their disability compensation dollar-for-dollar from their retired pay.
https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr333 — Introduced: Jan 22, 2013 ( latest HR333 in 113th Congress )
It’s my strong belief that retired pay is earned (as well as promised contractually) for a career of uniformed service, and VA disability compensation is recompense for pain, suffering, and lost future earning power due to service-connected disabilities. Those who suffer a service-caused disability should have their VA disability compensation added to, not subtracted from their service-earned military retired pay.
#DisabledVeteransTaxTerminationAct #Chapter61Retirees @Chapter61Milita
“Our ability to recruit soldiers to fight our next war is directly dependent upon how we take care of our veterans of previous wars.”
~ Senator Tom Coburn, M.D., Oklahoma, as quoting a “wise General once saying.”
“The nation which forgets its defenders will be itself forgotten.”
~ Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States of America
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