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VETERANS OFFICE LACKS BARE ESSENTIALS

Employees at the St. Thomas-St. John district Veteran's Affairs Office continue to function despite lack of budget, supplies and equipment.
The VAO, which is charged with preparing applications for compensation and pension claims, burial benefits, education benefits, home loans and headstone markers for more than 6,000 veterans, is limping along without computers, desks or even stamps, according to the Daily News.
The lack of equipment and supplies has created a huge backlog, with veterans waiting six months or more for a response on reimbursements.
"I saw them (officials) praising them on Veterans Day at Emancipation Gardens, and we don't even have the basic supplies to help them," said Jodeen Dawson, an employee of the local VA office.
Dawson and her co-workers have decided that instead of exchanging Christmas gifts this year, they'll buy items for the office.

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