22 Veterans a day commit suicide in the US. Veterans and supporters fight to drop that number everyday with outreach programs, services, and advocacy. In Wake County, we have the Veterans Services Office which helps Veterans and their family members apply for benefits and services from the VA. What isn't available are smaller resources that can mean the world, even life and death, to any Veteran in need. I would like Raleigh to pioneer Veteran Services and be an example to the rest of North Carolina by following the template Franklin, Massachusetts has put forth. In conjunction with the Wake County VSO, I would like to see Raleigh offer these services:
▪ In-home visits to veterans who are disabled and need assistance completing required paperwork to complete applications.
▪ A home check up program for at risk vets. A simple phone call or home visit to make sure the vet is still alive can be as crucial as the senior well-check program.
▪ Put Veteran preference on applications to city government employment.
▪ Job search, workshops, seminars, and employment training opportunities.
▪ Transportation to medical appointments and Veteran's facilities.
▪ Retrieving military records.
▪ A friendly ear is provided to veterans who come in and need someone to talk to.
▪ An annual Veterans & Service Members event held in a local park in Raleigh for Veterans Services Awareness and appreciation.
This is not a complete fix for the problems facing Veterans in our community, but it does put forth services where NONE existed before. It will show that Raleigh cares for vets and help them succeed in reintegration.