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Charlotte Amalie
Monday, December 4, 2023
HomeNewsArchivesVETERANS: WE ARE IGNORED

VETERANS: WE ARE IGNORED

“Nobody cares about veterans in the Virgin Islands” was the overwhelming testimony at a Senate hearing Thursday night on the status of veterans' affairs here. Their evidence: the lack of statistics on the number of veterans in the territory.
“How can you make an assessment of how much money veterans need when you don’t know how many there are?” World War II veteran Romeo Malone asked, according to the Daily News report.
Along with the lack of statistics, it was also revealed that 57 claims for
reimbursement of burial benefits remain unpaid, some going back to 1997.
A Daily News story in December revealed the abysmal conditions at the local Veterans Affairs Office, which was functioning without computers, desks or even stamps. Jodeen Dawson, a student working at the office, testified that conditions remain unchanged.
Only five groups responded to that story —- three from the private sector and two federal agencies. Of the private sector groups one reportedly consisted of tourists from Pennsylvania.
There was no response at that time from either the Legislature or the Schneider administration, the Daily News quoted Dawson as saying.

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