Given the crisis embroiling the Department of Veterans Affairs over healthcare delays that may have contributed to dozens of deaths, President Obama’s announcement that military forces will be withdrawn from Afghanistan by the end of 2016 could hardly have come at a better time.
The president’s plan is to reduce the number of forces still fighting the nation’s longest war to just under 10,000 next year and to have nothing but embassy staff and security there by the end of 2016, the end of his presidency. There were more than 100,000 servicemen and women deployed to Afghanistan at the height of the war launched in 2001 in response to the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Choosing a nursing home for oneself or for a relative can be one of life’s most overwhelming tasks — right up there with picking a college or buying a house. In the selection process, there are certain obvious factors to consider, but perhaps even more important are some of the frequently overlooked details.
Most experts in the field agree on the basic steps involved in finding a nursing home that is suitable for an individual’s particular needs.
Dozens of companies and organizations were represented at York College in Jamaica on Friday to help veterans find jobs and assist them in obtaining due benefits.
The Welcome Home the Troops event was hosted by the United Coalition for Veteran and Community Rights and Congressman Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica), in conjunction with Assemblyman William Scarborough (D-Jamaica) and Councilman Leroy Comrie (D- St. Albans).
More than 100 members of Woodhaven Post 118 of the American Legion gathered under sunny skies to honor their fallen comrades during the group’s annual Memorial Day ceremony at their headquarters in Woodhaven on Monday. Community residents also attended the ceremony.
The cadets of Franklin K. Lane High School’s Air Force Junior ROTC participated in the service and set up a “Garden of Remembrance,” containing nearly 700 miniature crosses and Stars of David, each adorned with an American flag and a red poppy flower to represent a post member who died in service.
High rollers only
As a United States Marine Corps veteran and former chairman and current member of the New York City Council Committee on Veterans, I am deeply concerned about the future of our returning servicemen and women.
The neglected World War I memorial in Douglaston is shabby no more.
With some strong prodding from Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone), the 66-year-old monument was cleaned and the area around it spruced up by various city agencies, including the departments of Transportation and Parks and the Economic Development Corp.
Veterans in Queens and Nassau County are celebrating a victory as the House of Representatives passed the Veterans Care Act on Tuesday, an amendment to a military appropriations bill that would block privatization planned for part of the St. Albans VA site.
Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica), who introduced the legislation along with Rep. Peter King (R-Nassau), said “it will prevent the fabric of my community from being destroyed by the creation of high-density residential and retail developments,” adding that it “does not meet the needs of veterans and therefore should be stopped immediately.”
Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica) and Rep. Peter King (R-Nassau) have introduced a bill that would prohibit the planned private development of the St. Albans Veteran’s Administration site.
The St. Albans project has been a source of controversy for years, with the VA believing that replacing the existing facilities with a new nursing home, rehabilitation domiciliary and expanded outpatient facilities is the way to go, despite consistent opposition from many veterans. A private developer would build the facilities in exchange for a long-term lease on part of the site where it would put up housing and stores open to the general public.
The City Council’s Committee on Veterans as well as the full council last week unanimously passed a resolution supporting the desire of many lawmakers and veterans advocates that a full-service hospital be built at the St. Albans VA site rather than giving a portion of the land to a private developer.
The St. Albans project has been a source of controversy for years, with the VA believing that replacing the existing facilities with a new nursing home, psychosocial rehabilitation domiciliary and expanded outpatient facilities is the way to go, despite consistent opposition from many veterans.
The year began with an earthquake and ended with a blizzard. And like many of the events that occurred during the 12 months between those events, it gave residents an opportunity to band together for the greater good. 2010 was also a time to honor the legacy of those who passed away like City Councilman Tom White Jr., religious leader the Rev. Carlene Thorbs and police shooting victim Sean Bell.
Drawing creative inspiration from the Halloween season, retail workers transformed themselves into ghastly zombies, slathering on white makeup and fake blood last Thursday night outside the Queens Center mall in Elmhurst. These walking undead, however, did not adhere to traditional expectations: energetic and articulate rather than listless and grunting, they had something to say more in keeping with the election season.
Members of the United Coalition of Veterans and Community Rights gathered on the corner of Linden Boulevard and 179th Street in St. Albans Saturday in protest of the commercial development of the St. Albans VA Hospital. Passionate veterans and community enthusiasts chanted and held picket signs in front of the historic hospital in hopes to sway the VA’s plans to demolish it and build rental units along with a new medical facility they deem inadequate. The rally held was just the latest in an ongoing battle between the VA, veterans and their supporters.
More jobs lost
Plans to redevelop the St. Albans VA site, by replacing its current buildings with modern structures and giving 25 acres to a developer to build low-density housing have been put on hold, with no progress made in the last year, according to a spokesman for the VA New York Harbor Health Care System.