Veterans who were exposed to Agent Orange or other herbicides during military service may be eligible for a variety of VA benefits, including disability compensation for diseases associated with exposure. Your dependents and survivors also may be eligible for benefits.
"Agent Orange" refers to a blend of tactical herbicides the U.S. military sprayed in the jungles of Vietnam and around the Korean demilitarized zone to remove trees and dense tropical foliage that provided enemy cover. Herbicides were also used by the U.S. military to defoliate military facilities in the U.S. and in other countries as far back as the 1950s.
In addition, VA has determined there is evidence of exposure to Agent Orange for Air Force and Air Force Reserve members who served during the period 1969 through 1986 and regularly and repeatedly operated, maintained, or served onboard C-123 aircraft (known to have been used to spray an herbicide agent during the Vietnam era). For more information about service qualifications and other eligibility criteria, visit our Agent Orange C-123 web page.
VA and federal law presumes that certain diseases are a result of exposure to these herbicides. This "presumptive policy" simplifies the process for receiving compensation for these diseases since VA foregoes the normal requirements of proving that an illness began during or was worsened by your military service.
A Veteran who believes he or she has a disease caused by Agent Orange exposure that is not one of the conditions listed below must show an actual connection between the disease and herbicide exposure during military service.
VA presumes that Veterans were exposed to Agent Orange or other herbicides if they served:
If you fall into either category listed above, you do not have to show that you were exposed to Agent Orange to be eligible for disability compensation for diseases VA presumes are associated with it. Check the list of U.S. Navy and Coast Guard ships that operated in Vietnam to confirm whether your service aboard a ship allows VA to concede you were exposed to Agent Orange..
Even if you did not serve in Vietnam or the Korean demilitarized zone during the specified time periods, you can still apply for disability compensation if you were exposed to an herbicide while in the military and believe it led to the onset of a disease. This includes:
If eligible, you must prove that you were exposed to Agent Orange or other herbicides during your military service to be eligible for service-connection for disease VA presumes are related to Agent Orange exposure.
Exception: Blue Water Veterans with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma may be granted service-connection without showing inland waterway service or that they set foot in Vietnam. This is because VA also recognizes non-Hodgkin's lymphoma as related to service in Vietnam or the waters offshore of Vietnam during the Vietnam Era.
VA currently presumes that some diseases resulted from exposure to herbicides like Agent Orange. The Veterans Health Administration's Public Health website lists these diseases VA presumes are associated with exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides during military service:
If you are seeking service connection for one of the diseases VA presumes is associated with exposure to herbicides during service, VA requires the following:
If you believe that you have a disease caused by herbicide exposure, but that disease is not on the list of diseases associated with Agent Orange, you may still apply for service-connection. In these cases, VA requires all of the following:
Monthly payment rates are based on the Veteran's combined rating for his or her service-connected disabilities. These ratings are based on the severity of the disabilities. Additional amounts are paid to certain Veterans with severe disabilities ("special monthly compensation") and certain Veterans with dependents. You can view the current Compensation Rate Tables to determine the amount you may receive.
For more information on how to apply and for tips on making sure your claim is ready to be processed by VA, visit our How to Apply page.
Check VA's Guide to Agent Orange Claims to learn more about how to establish eligibility to disability compensation and how much VA pays. You can also call the Agent Orange Help Line at 1-800-749-8387 or send an e-mail to GW/AOHelpline@vba.va.gov. You must provide your name, e-mail address, telephone and/or fax number, and VA file number/Social Security Number. We will do our best to respond within a reasonable amount of time (usually 3 to 10 workdays).
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LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD !!
whether you are a veteran or not, you can contact the 'Senate Veteran Affairs Committee', 'The House Committee on Veterans' Affairs', and the US Dept. of Veteran Affairs.
Just click on their links on our page titled "PROGRAMS/RESOURCES/BOD
On September 11, 2001 at 9:37 am, American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon.
Click on the picture to view the video as it happened.
The CBS report with Bryant Gumbel
Pittsburgh, Pa. FBI Office accounts of responding to Shanksville.
The following is a story by 'Teen Kids News'
I found their perspective especially understanding when they acknowledged a deep and historically seeded understanding about 'who we are', and that was: "always remember that we were attacked not for what we do wrong but for what we do right".
The attacks of September 11, 2001, reshaped the face of the nation and the course of history. Our lives and the lives of those to come — not just here in New York or the United States, but around the globe — have changed forever.
The date, September 11, will forever evoke recollections of unimaginable tragedy, of lives callously lost and brutally cut short and of unspeakable horror and sorrow in the hearts and minds of all of us. We must never forget the depths of inhumanity to which terrorist fanatics are willing to sink in the name of their depraved cause as they seek to destroy the very principles of freedom and democracy on which this great nation was founded.
That is why each and every September 11, we as Americans pay tribute to those who lost their lives that fateful day. We gather in unity and dignity to honor the freedoms that we have fought for in the past, the freedoms our loved ones have died for, and those freedoms that we continue to fight for today.
Remembering that day is not a choice but our solemn obligation — on September 11, 2001, there were 2,749 heroes lost; seven buildings destroyed and, with their collapse, 30 million square feet of commercial office space was lost or damaged; 60,000 jobs disappeared; 65,000 commuters were dislocated by the destruction; five subway lines and 12 subway stations were affected or closed; and 1.6 million tons of smoking debris filled the World Trade Center site.
As you recall September 11, always remember that we were attacked not for what we do wrong but for what we do right. Remember the spirit of that day — the day America showed what makes us a great people and a great nation; the day the true character of our nation triumphed over unspeakable evil; the day that freedom and democracy prevailed yet again over oppression and tyranny.
By By George Pataki/ CNN
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