Date: April 12, 2013
Place of Meeting: to be determined
Meeting Facilitator: Rick Reyes, Chair; or Russ Weed, 1st Vice Chair
I. Call to order, Roll Call of Officers and Certification of Quorum
Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America
One minute of silence for veterans killed and wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan
II. a. Chairperson's Report
b. Secretary, Approval of minutes from last year's State Convention (minutes can be downloaded here - pdf)
c. Treasurer, Financial Report
d. Election of Officers
III. Old Business:
IV. New Business
a. CDP Requirements for Caucus Recertification
b. Resolution to Provide Shelter and Services for Veterans
c. Guest speakers, candidates for office
Whereas, in the decade since the 9/11 terrorist attack on our country, more than 2.2 million troops have been deployed to support the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Many of those returning from combat face new battles as they transition back to civilian life. Some veterans suffer invisible wounds including Post -Traumatic Stress Disorder and other types of mental and emotional issues. If not treated, these problems can lead to troubled relationships, lost jobs, substance abuse, homelessness and even suicide
Whereas, homelessness among veterans between the ages of 25 and 54, those most likely to be veterans of service in Iraq and Afghanistan, has risen considerably. Today 61 percent of our homeless veterans fall into this age range.
Be It resolved, that to effectively serve a large portion of this population with shelter and services, Permanent Supportive Housing with robust individualized services be provided to promote independent living leading to an early return to the community life. Services to include case management, medical and psychiatric care, housekeeping, home health assistance, medication and appointment reminders, addiction treatment, meal programs, and life coaching avoiding the more expensive institutions such as jails, hospitals, and homeless shelters.
Whereas, at discharge from military service, veterans are not enrolled in the VA System upon separation from service; and many, if not most, veterans are not well informed of VA services and locations of the various VA facilities, and that there is currently a inordinate delay in the processing of veterans claims in some cases as long as two years.
A lot is at stake in California this year for the Democratic Party and our Veterans Caucus. As you did when your country called your to service in defending our freedoms overseas, step up do your part to make sure key measures pass and Democratic candidates win their races.
Here's how you can help:
Every time a Veterans Caucus member volunteers for a shift at a participating Battleground California office as part of the CDP's coordinated campaign, that volunteer should sign in on-site as a member of the Caucus. Our Veterans Caucus will then get credit for total volunteer shifts.
The caucus with the most volunteer shifts will be recognized at the California Democratic Party's Executive Board Meeting following the November election.
At www.BattlegroundCA.com, you'll find a list of offices, or sign up to volunteer and one of CDP's coordinators will call you.
A $10 million study will investigate if a substance found in fish oil can reduce the risk of suicide among military veterans, where the rate is higher than in the population as a whole.
The three-year study of omega-3 fatty acids was announced RECENTLY by the Medical University of South Carolina, the Veterans Administration and the National Institutes of Health.
In the controlled study being conducted for the Army, veterans already receiving mental health services will be given smoothies high in omega-3s for a six-month period. Others will be given a placebo.
Omega-3s are the main fats in the brain and essential for neural function and normal brain development, said Bernadette Marriott, a professor in the Institute of Psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina and the principal investigator in the study.
“Through other studies it’s been found that they can help improve depression significantly,” she said.
The Veterans Administration estimates that 20 percent of the suicides in the nation are committed by veterans and that the rate among vets is almost twice as high as in the general population.