NVLSP SAYS IT IS GRATEFUL VA IS EXPANDING BENEFITS TO AGENT ORANGE EXPOSED VETERANS WHO FLEW C-123 PLANES AFTER VIETNAM WAR
The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) will continue to monitor how VA manages Agent Orange disability benefits and ensure that veterans are treated fairly
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 18, 2015
WASHINGTON –The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) issues the following statement on today’s announcement by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) awarding a presumption of Agent Orange exposure to military veterans who flew C-123 planes after the Vietnam War:
Today’s announcement awards disability benefits to these veterans, many of them Air Force reservists, who did not initially know they were exposed to Agent Orange while flying C-123 planes for the military after the Vietnam war ended.
Sadly – we have seen the toxic legacy of Agent Orange play out in the lives of Vietnam veterans and their families for decades – with Vietnam veterans suffering from serious illnesses scientifically linked to Agent Orange exposure.
This decision was the right thing to do for our veterans and their families. We are grateful the VA is taking steps to recognize the January 2015 report by the Institute of Medicine connecting to military service the illnesses and diseases these veterans are suffering from because they were exposed to toxic Agent Orange.
As it has done for the last four decades, NVLSP will continue to monitor how VA manages Agent Orange disability benefits and we will work to ensure that veterans are treated fairly.
As class counsel for the landmark litigation that awarded Agent Orange disability benefits to Vietnam veterans, Nehmer v. United States (1986), NVLSP has an ongoing team of five attorneys and a paralegal devoted to ensuring that the VA meets its obligations.
Since August 2010, NVLSP attorneys have identified more than 2,000 cases where the VA shortchanged Vietnam veterans exposed to Agent Orange or their survivors on the amount of benefits owed. NVLSP attorneys helped these veterans and their families secure more than $50 million in owed benefits.
AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEWS
- Bart Stichman, attorney and joint executive director of NVLSP, negotiated the original Nehmer settlement and an expert on Agent Orange exposure and VA disability benefits.
- Ron Abrams, attorney and joint executive director of NVLSP, an expert in Agent Orange exposure and VA disability benefits and a former VA staff member.
The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) is an independent, nonprofit veterans’ service organization that has served active duty military personnel and veterans since 1980. NVLSP strives to ensure that our nation honors its commitment to its 22 million veterans and active duty personnel by ensuring they have the federal benefits they have earned through their service to our country. NVSLP offers training for attorneys and other advocates, connects veterans and active duty personnel with pro bono legal help when seeking disability benefits, publishes the nation's definitive guide on veteran benefits, and represents and litigates for veterans and their families before the VA, military discharge review agencies and federal courts. For more information go to www.nvlsp.org.
Media contact: Ami Neiberger-Miller, 703-887-4877, ami@steppingstoneLLC.com