Announcing MyCleanSlatePA, and the Criminal Record Screening Project! –
Clean Slate implementation begins as of December 26th, with thousands of Pennsylvanians newly eligible to seal their first-degree misdemeanors and their simple assault convictions!
People all over the state have been looking for advice about whether Clean Slate will help them. Working with the Pennsylvania Bar Association, CLS has created the Clean Slate Screening Project. See the flyer for this project here.
People around the state can sign up for screening and advice either by calling the PBA or putting in their information at www.MyCleanSlatePA.com. The PBA is recruiting lawyers who CLS will train on January 7th and who then will provide free legal screening and advice to these people. These lawyers will not themselves provide representation on expungement or sealing petitions if the person qualifies, but will direct them to potential legal help or let them know that Clean Slate will automatically seal their records when that part of the law goes into effect. See the attached brochure for more information. CLS will also be building MyCleanSlatePA into a one-stop site for breaking information about – what else? – Clean Slate information in PA.
Please help get the word out about the Clean Slate Screening Project and www.MyCleanSlatePA.com! Share this email and the brochure widely, and tweet about CSSP!
VA and HUD Release More Housing Vouchers to Help Homeless Veterans
Federal Agencies Seeking to Eradicate Homelessness Among Veterans
For Immediate Release – October 24, 2018
LEBANON, Pa. – The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced the award of $35 million in rental assistance vouchers to public housing agencies (PHAs) to combat homelessness among Veterans. These rental assistance vouchers, awarded through the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program, will allow 212 PHAs across the country to provide permanent supportive housing for more than 4,000 homeless Veterans. Locally, the Harrisburg Housing Authority received 17 vouchers or a total of $74,496, and the Housing Authority of the City of York received 12 vouchers or a total of $59,547 to support additional rentals. With these additions, Lebanon VA Medical Center is now able to assist 335 Veterans with the HUD-VASH program locally.
The HUD-VASH program combines rental assistance vouchers from HUD with case management and clinical services provided by VA. Since 2008, more than 93,000 vouchers have been awarded nationally and approximately 150,000 homeless Veterans have been served through the HUD-VASH program. The vouchers have contributed to the 46 percent decline in homelessness among Veterans nationally since the Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness was launched in 2010. In Harrisburg and York, PA, homelessness among Veterans has declined by 88 and 40 percent, respectively, since 2010.
“We are proud of our strong partnerships with HUD, the cities of Harrisburg and York, as well as, other organizations that are helping to build reliable systems to ensure homelessness is rare, brief, and non-recurring among the Veterans who sacrificed so much for us all,” said Robert W. Callahan, Jr., Director and CEO of Lebanon VA Medical Center. “We will not rest until every homeless Veteran has a place to call home.”
In the HUD-VASH program, VA medical centers (VAMCs) assess Veterans experiencing homelessness before referring them to local housing agencies for these vouchers. Decisions to grant vouchers to particular Veterans are based on a variety of factors, most importantly the duration of homelessness and the need for long-term, intensive support in obtaining and maintaining permanent housing. Veterans participating in the HUD-VASH program rent privately owned housing and generally contribute no more than 30 percent of their income toward rent. VA offers eligible homeless Veterans clinical and supportive services through its medical centers across the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
Visit www.va.gov/homeless/hud-vash.asp to learn more about the HUD-VASH program.
Lebanon VA Medical Center is one of 170 medical centers in the nation with the sole purpose of providing world-class medical care to America’s Veterans. Lebanon VAMC serves a nine-county area in South Central Pennsylvania covering Adams, Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon,
Perry, Schuylkill and York counties. Lebanon VAMC also oversees community clinics located in Mechanicsburg, Lancaster, Pottsville, Wyomissing, York and Fort Indiantown Gap. If you are Veteran, you may be eligible to receive care and benefits from VA. To learn more, call 717-228-6000.
For more information about the Lebanon VA Medical Center, visit www.lebanon.va.gov, like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/VALebanon, or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/VALebanon.
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"ALERT - JURY DUTY SCAM"
Perry County Sheriff's Office is warning citizens about an ongoing phone scam related to jury duty, presently occurring in Dauphin County. To date there are no know incidents in Perry County.
The caller claims the call recipient owes a fine for failing to appear for jury duty, and that the fine may be paid by some form of a gift card.
Authentic jury duty notifications, including failure to appear notices will not be sent by e-mails. Sheriff Hile advised that they will contact a Juror, by phone, if the Juror misses jury selection; however, they will never ask for payments of any type nor a Social Security Number.
If you or anyone you know have been contacted for such payment, please report this to the Perry County Sheriff's office at (717) 582-5123.
VA Announces Rollout and Application Process for New Veterans ID Card
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that the application process for the national Veterans Identification Card (VIC) is now available for Veterans — yet another action honoring their service.
This has been mandated through legislation since 2015 to honor Veterans, and the rollout of the ID card fulfills that overdue promise.
Only those Veterans with honorable service will be able to apply for the ID card, which will provide proof of military service, and may be accepted by retailers in lieu of the standard DD-214 form to obtain promotional discounts and other services where offered to Veterans.
“The new Veterans Identification Card provides a safer and more convenient and efficient way for most Veterans to show proof of service,” said VA Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin. “With the card, Veterans with honorable service to our nation will no longer need to carry around their paper DD-214s to obtain Veteran discounts and other services.”
The VIC provides a more portable and secure alternative for those who served the minimum obligated time in service, but did not meet the retirement or medical discharge threshold. Veterans who served in the armed forces, including the reserve components, and who have a discharge of honorable or general (under honorable conditions) can request a VIC.
To request a VIC, Veterans must visit vets.gov, click on “Apply for Printed Veteran ID Card” on the bottom left of the page and sign in or create an account.
Veterans who apply for a card should receive it within 60 days and can check delivery status of their cards at vets.gov. A digital version of the VIC will be available online by mid-December.
LOWE'S ANNOUNCES MILITARY DISCOUNT OFFERING TO VETERANS
Lowe's home improvement stores has announced they are expanding military discount program (10%) to include honorably discharged military veterans and retirees. To take advantage, current and former members need to sign up online or visit the service desk. They'll provide identification and proof of service and then receive a Lowe's card to show at stores to receive the discounts and benefits. The discount is linked to the veteran's Lowe's account. Once someone receives their card they don't have to show proof of service or ID at checkouts.
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Attention Veterans needing Emergency Care:
If you are enrolled in the VA Medical Benefits and require Emergency Medical/Room treatment outside the VA, for VA to pay those medical costs, you must contact Lebanon VAMC within 48 hours and request payment through fee Basis. Failure to contact Lebanon VAMC within the 48 hours may be reason for a denial for payment by the VA of any of the costs for your treatment.
Disability compensation VA recently proposed a rule to create presumptive service connection for Veterans, Reservists, and National Guard members exposed to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune from August 1, 1953 through December 31, 1987 who later developed one of the following eight diseases:
Aplastic anemia and other myelodysplastic syndromes
Presently, these conditions are the only ones for which there is sufficient scientific and medical evidence to support the creation of presumptions; however, VA will continue to review relevant information as it becomes available. Veterans who are experiencing other health conditions that they think may be related to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune are encouraged to contact their primary care provider and to file a claim. VA reviews and decides disability compensation claims on a case-by-case basis. -
See more at: http://www.publichealth.va.gov/exposures/camp-lejeune/#sthash.ZA1frcoV.dpuf
ATTENTION VETERANS: If you are planning on signing up for Social Security, take your DD-214 to the appointment. Your Military Service may increase your monthly benefit.
A recently developed a new site meant to offer greater insight and information for Veterans looking for the best educational option available. They focused their research on factors most relevant and value to Veterans, such as current veterans student population, net out of pocket costs, reputation, program support. Most importantly the resource provides tools that let Veterans create their own methodology/criteria to help evaluate and compare the researched data.
You can see the entire guide along with some of its features here:
VA Launches Hotline to Answer Questions on VA Health Care and Benefits for Women Veterans: 1-855-VA-WOMEN (1-855-829-6636)
WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs has launched a new hotline — 1-855-VA-WOMEN — to receive and respond to questions from Veterans, their families and caregivers about the many VA services and resources available to women Veterans. The service began accepting calls on April 23, 2013.
“Some women Veterans may not know about high-quality VA care and services available to them,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “The hotline will allow us to field their questions and provide critical information about the latest enhancements in VA services.”