Will slaying of ex-SEAL Chris Kyle mar veteran job market?

The weekend homicides of ex-Navy SEAL and “American Sniper” author Chris Kyle and a friend in Texas have stoked fresh concerns among mental-health experts and veteran advocates that the crime’s PTSD theme will further stigmatize and dampen an already-soggy job market for men and women home from war.


“What worries me about this story is it will frighten potential employers away from hiring veterans who have been in Iraq and Afghanistan,” said Dr. Harry Croft, a San Antonio-based psychiatrist who has talked with more than 7,000 veterans diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.

“The myth is all of them have PTSD  — not true, only 20 percent.  Another myth is that all of them who have a severe case of it — not true; it goes from very mild to severe. The third myth is that everybody with PTSD is aggressive, unreliable, or trouble in the workplace, and none of that is (true) either. It scares me,” Croft said.


The unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans was 11.7 percent in January compared to 9.1 percent in January 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Younger female veterans grappled with a 17.1 percent unemployment rate last month — virtually unchanged from one year ago — while the unemployment rate for younger male veterans was 10.5 percent in January, which marked an increase from 7.7 percent during the same month in 2012.

“One of the things I talk about in the presentations I give to employers is how the stigma of the crazed vet like Sgt. (Robert) Bales, or, now, this young man in Texas, is very rare and it’s atypical. Now, that doesn’t mean that a vet with PTSD doesn’t have anger and agitation issues. But generally, it’s worse at home than it is at work,” said Croft, who co-authored “I Always Sit with My Back to the Wall: Managing Traumatic Stress and Combat PTSD.”

Chris Kyle, a sniper in Iraq, was so feared that he was dubbed "The Devil of Ramadi" and had an $80,000 bounty on his head. Tragically, it wasn't enemy fire that killed him, but a fellow soldier asking for help with PTSD. NBC's Jim Miklaszewski reports.

Eddie Ray Routh, 25, a Marine Corps corporal from 2006 to 2010 who deployed to Iraq in 2007, was arraigned Sunday on two counts of capital murder in the deaths of Kyle, 38, and Chad Littlefield, 35, at a shooting range in North Texas. Both men were killed with a semi-automatic handgun.

According to Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant, Routh "may have been suffering from some type of mental illness from being in the military himself." Bryant added that Routh's mother possibly contacted Kyle to try to help her son. The sheriff also learned, he said, that the three men might have been at the range “for some type of therapy that Mr. Kyle assists people with.”

Some veterans who toil in the job-mentoring trenches to try to deflate those unemployment stats share Croft’s concern that Texas shootings may bolster an existing PTSD stigma and inject more doubt into the minds of some hiring managers.

“Unfortunately, I think that’s a possibility,” said John E. Pickens, executive director of VeteransPlus and the Yellow Ribbon Registry Network. VeteransPlus has offered financial counseling to more than 150,000 current and former service members. The nonprofit also has partnered with The WorkPlace, Citi and Wal-Mart to help long-term, unemployed veterans improve their job candidacies and find work.

“But I’m not sure how to address that (stigma) because for those people who read something like this and take away a negative impression, it’s very difficult — other than having a one-on-one, good experience with a veteran — to be able to overcome that,” said Pickens, a former Army combat medic.

Iraq veteran Ed Richardson, who’s now attending college but who’s been scouting for a job since December 2011, has watched employers offer subtle signals about his war service during job interviews.

“I’ve had people’s body language completely change with me — their eyes get large and they want to lean back in their chair” when the topic arises with hiring managers, said Richardson, 49, who is in the Army Reserves and who lives in Kentucky. “Some ask me: ‘Have you had any issues? Because some veterans have had the problems.’

"Being a veteran and having that going against me (in job hunting), you have to have something to counter it and I believe having an associate degree can help, or preferably a bachelor’s degree,” Richardson said. He ideally wants to work in federal law enforcement. “But I’m very positive about my outlook.” 

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I thought a good guy with a gun was supposed to stop this sort of thing.

Were there not enough guns at the gun range to protect the innocent lives against the mentally unstable murderer?

  • 6 votes
Reply#1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 4:27 PM EST

Sure, the side saying guns protect and we should all have guns etc are polarizing and sound silly, but you are on the opposite side with your statement. Why can't we have a real conversation without both polarizing sides being so extreme? Your statement adds no value to the conversation.

  • 7 votes
#1.1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 4:40 PM EST

Killers will kill no matter who's around and who has a gun. You don't know all the facts. It's likely the two victims were putting their weapons away or just flat didn't see it coming. Just because I own a gun for my own protection and that of my home, doesn't mean I'm going to get the chance to depending on the circumstances. Even you haters should be bright enough to understand that!

  • 10 votes
#1.2 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 5:29 PM EST

D-1129384 You thought a good guy with a gun could stop a murder before it began? Like with super powers? I see.

  • 4 votes
#1.3 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 6:40 PM EST

Alim, we have been told over and over that more guns will result in fewer murders. What we are pointing out is that this is a bold faced lie. As this example proves.

  • 5 votes
#1.4 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:56 PM EST

And you have been informed that the number of gun violence and homicides has decreased as the number of guns in the US has risen. These are facts available from the FBI/DOJ. But you don't listen to that.

So, how intellectually honest is it to question one incident?

  • 2 votes
#1.5 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 8:00 PM EST

Eddie Ray Routh, 25, a Marine Corps corporal from 2006 to 2010 who deployed to Iraq in 2007, was arraigned Sunday on two counts of capital murder in the deaths of Kyle, 38, and Chad Littlefield, 35, at a shooting range in North Texas.

OK. Here lies part of the problem.

From 2006 to 2010 IS 4 yrs. This means he was a Corporal starting when he was 21 or so. You have to have some experience under your belt before you are even eligible to become a Corporal. Or at least, some serious trust by higher ups who see something in you that they recommend and put their asses on line for.

This guy seen & was put through too much before he was even mature enough to understand what he was dealing with and when they unchained him from the military, "unfortunately", he couldn't handle simple civilian reality anymore. And just lost it to a situation he thought he could handle but, he just couldn't, and inadvertently handled it the only way he knew how. (at the time) but then, it was too late...

This happens all too often. This is why you see and read about some of the most successful tactical situations performed by Navy seals, Marines etc... that are coordinated and the choreographic nature of performing your training come from highly experienced personnel.

This, of course, is what the world is allowed to see. For obvious reasons...

What a shame and waste of everyone involved.

  • 2 votes
#1.6 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 8:42 PM EST

Dog -

Good post.

    #1.7 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:38 PM EST

    Creek-Dog

    I made Corporal when I was 19. [ many moons ago during the "unpopular war"]. I was an Infantry "grunt". My Dad, also an Infantry grunt, made Corporal when he was 18 in WWII [ the "popular war"].

    I respect your opinion, but I disagree. Neither my Dad or I, or any of my "brothers", flipped out after our tour was done. Most guys don't, thank goodness.

    Maybe he's just a nut.

    • 2 votes
    #1.8 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:42 PM EST

    D- considering there are no details of what took place at that shooting your comment is moronic at best. There are a number of reasons the two victims weren't able to defend themselves.

    Buthey, why miss a chance to say something stupid.

      #1.9 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 6:00 AM EST

      Idaho, no one has said everyone should have a gun. Everyone I've seen have said that some absolutely should not and also it is your choice to have one or not.

        #1.10 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 6:04 AM EST

        Michael - both my dad and and Uncle each had one "flashback" caused by something they saw or heard after returning from war. They never had anymore after that. The brain is a database that stores good and bad memories. Given the right stimulus a repressed memory can be randomly accessed. I too am a veteran of the "unpopular" war. I was lucky enough not to have seen front line duty. OUr country treats veterans like second class citizens when they serve this country. It's about time the second class citizens are the ones that don't serve this country.

        "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what can you do for your country" John F. Kennedy

          #1.11 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 9:09 AM EST

          Bad Bob - Does an increase in police (guns) slow crime? Granted police are also not 'pro-active' in the sense that they are usually called after the deed has been done. Still, their presence in force seems to make a difference. If fewer police were around (let's call them some of the good guys with guns) would that lessen or increase crime? Is it a bald faced lie that criminals don't like it when they know forces are working against them and they leave those areas and go where the pickings are easier? How about when oppressive regimes face a populace armed against them - does that slow their assault on their own people? Many questions and answers posed, but how about the reality that people have died at the hands of others who would do them harm since time began. By gun or by knife, hammer or axe, I think commonsense as well as real numbers show fewer oppose another who is of equal or greater force.

            #1.12 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 5:56 PM EST
            Reply

            When you apply for a job nowadays, there are questions asking if you are a Veteran. Usually most companies give preference to a veteran looking for work. As to whether their mental stability is at question is a difficult issue. Should the government require veterans who were in combat to be tested every year as to problems they are dealing with might be a good idea. But then again, we see more people who have issues who are not veterans. I would like to hear what the veterans have to say about this.

              Reply#2 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 4:32 PM EST

              I have no doubt the concerns about this tragedy affecting the job market for veterans is both real and not blown out of proportion. I think most of the points raised by the article are quite valid.

              But there is another side to the story, especially when it comes to Veterans looking to find jobs in the Federal workforce.

              I work as a private contractor for a Government Agency and I work onsite. I'm not a government employee, but I've been working for government employees in a Gov't building for the past 13 years. When it comes to the "hiring" of a new Federal employee, hiring managers are pretty scared of Veterans and it has nothing to do with PTSD. It has everything to do with Veterans being preferentially hired for positions they are minimally qualified for.

              I've heard it time and time again. A person retires or quits and their position becomes open. There's a current employee in that department that already knows the job or is uniquely qualified for the position due to the experience of working in that department. Of course they bid on the job. What does the dep't manager say?

              "You better pray that a veteran doesn't bid on the job. If they do, the hiring may be out of my hands." The division then ends up with a Veteran that has little to no clue how to do the job. The person who was in line for that job now has to train a person who has little to no experience doing what they do. And yes, there is resentment. How would you feel if you lost a promotion to an outsider who was only minimally qualified? And now you have to train them!

              This is a somewhat common occurrence within the Federal government. Veterans get hired all the time for jobs where they are minimally qualified (notice I'm not saying unqualified). They require lots of training, usually by the people who were qualified for the position.

              Our Veterans put their life on the line for this country. I get that and understand that there should be a reward. I can understand why the Federal government is in a unique position to reward our veterans with Federal jobs.

              But being on this end of it, I also understand the frustration of hiring a person whose less qualified, solely because they are a Veteran. I understand the frustration of having to train someone whose less qualified, rather than promoting someone who can start right away. I get both sides of the argument.

              My point is simple.... our veterans do have the upper hand when it comes to landing Federal jobs (and maybe rightly so). While the concerns about this double murder are valid, it's not going to affect any veterans chance at landing a Federal job. As long as the qualifications are in the same Universe (instead of say, Ball Park), they will always be chosen over a non-veteran.

              • 1 vote
              #2.1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 5:17 PM EST

              Let's see: Many are calling for annual "mental evaluations" in order for citizens to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights. Now you would suggest that all veterans who have been deployed to combat zones should meet that requirement.

              85+ MILLION gun owners, let's guess at 5 to 15 MILLION working vets from conflict zones.

              Okay. Of course we don't have the qualified mental health professionals to perform all of those evaluations, but what the hey!

              According to the APA, there are 93,000 psychologists licensed and practicing in the US and 291,066 psychaitrists. Do the math, keeping in mind that these folks have other duties than performing annual evals.

              You sound like Congress - make a law and then let the public suffer the consequences. Maybe you shoudl run?

              • 1 vote
              #2.2 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:45 PM EST

              Actually, the main reason they ask is because there are tax breaks for hiring veterans. If they have two or more equally qualified candidates, that tax incentive can be the tie breaker.

                #2.3 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 7:39 AM EST
                Reply

                My husband has PTSD, while it has certainly caused some impact in our lives, violence has not been one of them. PTSD can be caused by a variety of traumas, not just combat, so to single out veterans would not be fair. Brain injuries can cause instability and poor impulse control. If one is going to ask about PTSD issues, then anyone with a brain injury should also be questioned.

                • 2 votes
                Reply#3 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 4:53 PM EST

                Mar the veteran job market? Only if you're looking for a job at a gun store or shooting range maybe....

                  Reply#4 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 5:18 PM EST

                  Because this article is about veterans, I am talking about veterans, but this would apply to ALL actual and potential gun owners. My concern is this:

                  The only maybe, possible, remotely possible agreement on guns is universal background checks. I am just guessing here, but it seems most veterans would EASILY pass the background check, after all, most are the ultimate good guys and they already know how to maintain and shoot a gun. BUT, what about those who are not stable. There may be relatively few of them, but THEY also know how to shoot a gun, and how to do the ultimate damage to those in their sights. Also, what about those veterans who have sought treatment for any problems (PTSD or other issues) they are having? Will they have a record that prevents them from passing the background check? Will the military REALLY make those records available? And, is it fair that those who seek help will have a record, while those who should seek help, but do not, will not have a record????? Do you see the problem here? How do we really determine who are the good guys with guns? Most importantly, how do we determine who are the guys who should not have guns? And how do we prevent them from having them? When there are countless millions of guns circulating? And more on the way? Does anyone have a solution?

                    Reply#5 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 5:43 PM EST

                    Universal background checks is the gotcha. UN Small Arms Treaty. Read up on this up and coming adventure in overcoming American law.

                      #5.1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 8:17 PM EST

                      Mary, it's easy to recommend those universal background checks, but realistically, there's problems in implementing them.

                      Just WHO is going to do all those tests? We don't have the medical personnel to handle all those mental health evaluations . WHO is going to pay for all those tests?

                        #5.2 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 8:03 AM EST
                        Reply

                        First let me say that I mean no criticism of Mr. Kyle's efforts to reach out to other veterans---(as a veteran myself, I consider it a privilege to work with other vets.)
                        So---having said that---two big Texas-size questions:
                        #1. Where was professional mental health back-up?
                        #2. What were their treatment plan goals, i.e; doing therapy armed and at a shooting range?

                        There's more to all this than meets the casual eye.

                        • 2 votes
                        Reply#6 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 6:04 PM EST

                        Lary9, #6- GREAT! post. And here's a 3rd question, if I may (and obviously am going to and Thank you):

                        3) Why was the "Alleged" Killer-with-PTSD of Mr Kyle and his Friend hit with a stun-gun in the jail/prison cell where he is right now for refusing to return his food tray? (BEFORE ARRAIGNMENT, too, I might add!)

                          #6.1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 6:38 PM EST

                          Mystery Rhee -

                          He might have been hit with a stun gun for not returning his tray as instructed.

                          Thankfully he wasn't 'stunned' from behind and killed.

                            #6.2 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:29 PM EST

                            alim-2810059, 6.2- ???? And that is because he's there to do as instructed to do OR ELSE?

                            Exacerbating a PTSD Person from front or side instead of from behind doesn't make one iota of a difference.

                            Is it also just a given (unspoken instruction) that you smile broadly as you get bent over to take it?

                              #6.3 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:40 PM EST

                              Mystery Rhee - I just reread your post and I think you missed it. Sarcasm. He got stunned. He shot the other guys and they died. By the way, what are your thoughts on those he killed? Any?

                                #6.4 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 8:38 PM EST

                                I read the same article you people did (I think) and NO WHERE in that article does it say that this person was diagnosed with PTSD.

                                He was getting back in civilian life. Well that can be an adjustment for sure. His mother said he was having problems.

                                The article says roughly 20% of all veterans coming home from war suffer from PTSD. I don't know about you, but it seems the media projects a much higher #. Everytime an issue with a vet comes into the news it's automatically PTSD.

                                I am not insulting our brave soldiers. I have a husband and a son active service, so I support our military 100%. But it just seems that to the media at least, PTSD is the mental health issue of the month.

                                • 1 vote
                                #6.5 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 8:12 AM EST
                                Reply

                                JESUS H. Christ.....you media asses glorify this crap....make every veteran, cop, soldier, etc that kills somebody a friggin "HERO" and saturate the headlines with gore and the "if it bleeds , it leads" philosophy. What morons. Background checks??....PT SD??.....Psychological profiles and therapy??.....The biggest example of being able to kill people at will and not be punished for it is the U.S.Congress.....Criminal behavior like that is glorified in America at the highest level and when questioned act like they are exempt and above the law and "little people"......the biggest problem in our country is the corruption and lawlessness of the world class idiots that are supposed to be LEADING America. There is a depression in America......financial and mental.....people feel lost and unsure of the future. No-one in leadership gives a damn and when the communications fail......violence follows. How stupid do you have to be. If you look at history.....the United States fought VIOLENTLY against Great Britain for LESSER reasons.......really now......what do think will happen if this world class corruption continues??....

                                • 3 votes
                                Reply#7 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 6:14 PM EST

                                A few veterans have issues, a very few may be violent. Well, guess what? There are a fair number of civilians who have issues and may be violent. If you check out the workplace killers from the last 20 years or so, how many were veterans? Mental instability and violence is hardly unique to vets. If human resource folks are afraid of people because they're veterans, then they're ignoring other hires that may be far more dangerous.

                                It's the same as saying that all people who suffer from mental illness are dangerous, which is patently untrue.

                                We need to get over extrapolating huge generalizations from a few isolated instances.

                                • 3 votes
                                Reply#8 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:13 PM EST

                                First off, are all the facts in on this matter? Was Travon Martin a slaying? No, that same people calling this a slaying, are the same people saying Zimmerman acted in self-defense.

                                Well, unless you all have eye-witness, or access to police interrogations, we don't know what happened. Supposed the Marine, claims self-defense? Are all you gun nuts going to support him, like you all supported Zimmerman?

                                These are valid questions..

                                  Reply#9 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:35 PM EST

                                  How about a gun ban so that returning veterans don't need guns?

                                    #9.1 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:49 PM EST

                                    Are all you "rabid gun grabbers" going to abandon him?

                                    Have you any proof that those calling this a slaying are the same people who back Zimmerman? (That would include of course the cops and DA who have charged this Marine veteran.)

                                    Your questions' validty suffers from your bias and lack of logic. It is apparent to all but the truly indoctrinated.

                                    • 1 vote
                                    #9.2 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:54 PM EST
                                    Reply

                                    Still waiting to hear exactly what happened at that gun

                                    range with Chris Kyle?

                                    • 2 votes
                                    Reply#10 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:53 PM EST

                                    Will the failures of our president hinder drug users from running for the oval?

                                    Stupid question - right? Much like the topic here

                                    • 1 vote
                                    Reply#11 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 8:11 PM EST

                                    CNN points out that Eddie Ray(?) was: "diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, "and he's been acting a little weird from that," and that he had gotten out of Green Oaks psychiatric hospital in Dallas the week before."

                                    Now if that is not enough to disarm the man, there is no hope for rational mental health policies to help stem this tide of blood.

                                      Reply#12 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:10 PM EST

                                      Just because one has a gun doesn't mean one can pull the trigger even in a bad situation. Good men have died in wars because they have a bleeding heart and could not go through with killing another human being. As the saying goes guns don't kill people, people kill people.

                                        Reply#13 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:29 PM EST

                                        Ya lets give a vet with mental illness a rifle.I would have suggested another program

                                          Reply#14 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:39 PM EST

                                          Tx,,lmao,

                                          Home of the hillbillie cowboys,,,

                                            Reply#15 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:42 PM EST

                                            Killed 150+ enemies in in a combat zone, then he gets gunned down state side. I'm always afraid something like this will befall me as well you know. It's always in the back of my head. Getting hit by a car, hanging out with friends and then getting shot at just because I was associating with em, etc. I'll be damned if something like this happens to me.

                                            As a Veteran myself (No Ramp Specops guy, just an average joe.), my heart goes out to this guy, seriously. He meant well, what can I say? We'll never really know what happened. The only one who will know is the gunner who gunned this brave man down like a damn coward.

                                            As far as Employers being hesitant on hiring Veterans, that's not going to happen. The majority of all the Veterans of my generation (Iraq/Afghanistan) are outgoing and care free. They knock on wood and appreciate more things in life. They're more humble and have an extremely open mind about all issues. We solve problems, not create them and we make sure we let our employers know that we're the best at what we do. Wether it be Admin, IT, Law Enforcement, Production, Logistics, etc. All the branches of military spend thousand of dollards to train an indivisual for their required job. Remember that.

                                              Reply#16 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 9:42 PM EST

                                              This is nothing new. Employers were afraid to hire Vietnam vets for the same reason.

                                                Reply#17 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 10:06 PM EST

                                                As a vet,I say his heart was in the right place,but the vet he was helping need anything but a weapon,

                                                  Reply#18 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 10:21 PM EST

                                                  Yes.

                                                    Reply#19 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 10:33 PM EST

                                                    I hope all of the immigrants injoy ( TAMPA --FLORIDA )their social benefits--food stamps--medicaid--wic--subdized housing--supplementary social security--free phone--as many have asked--why are those immigrants not back in Iraq fighting for their country.----and now Obama wants to take our guns--and he is the one who wants open borders--and he got it.

                                                    SEE; HTTP://WWW..USOPENBORDERS.COM

                                                    HTTP://WWW.ILLEGALIMMIGRATIONSTATISTICS.ORG

                                                      Reply#20 - Tue Feb 5, 2013 11:37 PM EST

                                                      It wasn't a good idea for a vet with PTSD to have a gun. And these killings show that even a vet can't tell how severe the PTSD another vet has is. Other countries don't have all the guns per capita we have, and they don't have anything like our rate of violent crime. It's time we learned from others.

                                                        Reply#21 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 12:29 AM EST

                                                        That is one of the great misconceptions. The US actually ranks quite low in terms of violent crimes - homicides, robberes, assaults with serious injury, rape.

                                                        Canada has twice the violent crime rate we have. The Brits between 5-6 times the violent crime rate.

                                                        We are quite high in gun homicides, but really quite low in terms of overall violent crime.

                                                        Do the research.

                                                          #21.1 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 2:03 AM EST

                                                          John, your making some assumptions with no facts to base them on and are misinformed about the violent crime rate.

                                                          As the article says and from personal experience there are different degrees of PTSD. To say someone with PTSD shouldn't have a gun is painting with a wide brush. I know of vets that suffered from the minor side of it that were law enforcement officers and pretty good ones. These would have been Viet Nam era vets.

                                                          From what I've read this isn't the first time Kyle has done this and since we have no details to speak of as to what happened you are making assumptions.

                                                          Finally, the US has a very low violent crime rate compared to other countries with much stricter firearm regulations. And those rates have been dropping.

                                                          • 1 vote
                                                          #21.2 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 6:49 AM EST
                                                          Reply

                                                          How could it (the hiring/admitting) of vets get any worse? Already those at the gates of power and influence are people who never served and think that all veterans are going to come in one day and start shooting up the place.

                                                          This is why we need to bring back the draft and why we need affirmative action-style legislation to guarantee the admission of a certain percentage of the 1%, those 1% of Americans who have served in the military, at all public education institutions and those public institutions that receive government grants.

                                                          • 1 vote
                                                          Reply#22 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 4:28 AM EST

                                                          Indeed. Time to bring back the draft for all those boys and girls who bruise easily and only sleep in tents erected in our city parks.

                                                          • 1 vote
                                                          #22.1 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 8:48 AM EST
                                                          Reply

                                                          The real sad reality is our cannibalistic capitalist society has little use for men who have a hard time readjusting to civilian life after serving their country bravely. These are some statistics from Veterans Inc.

                                                          • Number of veterans as of Sept. 2009: approximately 23 million1
                                                          • Increasing numbers of returning military personnel: according to the Mass. Dept. of Veterans’ Services, approximately 31,000 service members have returned to the Commonwealth since Sept. 11, 2001.
                                                          • Between 529,000 and 840,000 veterans are homeless at some time during the year.2
                                                          • On any given night, more than 300,000 veterans are living on the streets or in shelters in the U.S.
                                                          • Approx. 33% of homeless males in the U.S. are veterans.2
                                                          • Veterans are twice as likely as other Americans to become chronically homeless.2
                                                          • Veterans represent 11% of the adult civilian population, but 26% of the homeless population, according to the Homeless Research Institute (2007).
                                                          • Veterans are more at risk of becoming homeless than non-veterans
                                                          • The number of homeless Vietnam-era veterans, male and female, is greater than the number of soldiers who died during the war.1
                                                          • Primary causes of homelessness among veterans are:
                                                          1. Lack of income due to limited education and lack of transferable skills from military to civilian life (especially true of younger veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan)
                                                          2. Combat-related physical health issues and disabilities
                                                          3. Combat-related mental health issues and disabilities
                                                          4. Substance abuse problems that interfere with job retention
                                                          5. Weak social networks due to problems adjusting to civilian life
                                                          6. Lack of services.3
                                                            Reply#23 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 5:37 AM EST

                                                            mp

                                                              Reply#24 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 5:52 AM EST

                                                              Just a couple of interesting facts.

                                                              Audie Murphy ,most decorated soldier in US history and successful actor, suffered greatly from PTSD all through his life after WW2.

                                                              Lee Marvin, WW2 vet and actor, also suffered from it and turned to alcohol as it haunted him all his life.

                                                                Reply#25 - Wed Feb 6, 2013 6:59 AM EST
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