Preserving Veteran Status and Benefits for
Those Who Have Served in Theaters of Operations.
WHEREAS, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has proposed to amend its adjudication regulations regarding the definition of service in the Republic of Vietnam in regard to exposure to Agent Orange;
WHEREAS, the current definition of service in Vietnam includes service in the waters offshore and service in other locations if “conditions of service involved duty or visitation in the Republic of Vietnam”; and
WHEREAS, the VA wishes the definition “to include only service on land and on inland waterways” of the Republic of Vietnam; and
WHEREAS, thousands of Sailors served providing gunfire support aboard destroyers along the coast and on Yankee Station aircraft carriers providing air cover and bomb support over Vietnam; and
WHEREAS, thousands of Airmen stationed in Thailand, prepared aircraft and flew missions over Vietnam; and
WHEREAS, Marines and Soldiers fought in Laos and crossed into Cambodia; and
WHEREAS, distinguishing types of service in an theater of operations is a bad precedent, when “boots-on-the-ground” veterans are differentiated from all other Armed Forces participants, especially when this Nation is currently at war; and
WHEREAS, exposures to chemicals, toxins and heavy metals can be spread more widely by airborne drift or water-borne runoff than calculated patterns;
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Reserve Officers Association of the United States, chartered by the Congress, urge the Congress, the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs, to retain current definitions of service in any theater of operations ensuring that individuals are recognized for their service and remain eligible for health benefits regardless of manner of exposure whether on land, sea, or in the air.
Source: ROA Headquarters Staff
Renewed by the National Convention, February 2, 2011.
Adopted by the National Convention, June 28, 2008 as 08-11
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