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Veterans

Some VA hospitals in Florida are teaching veterans how to play the harmonica to improve their breathing. It’s part of a national program that takes an unconventional approach to treating lung disease.

Veterans will no longer have to pay for medical marijuana cards if bills filed by Sen. Janet Cruz and Rep. Adam Hattersley pass during the upcoming Florida legislative session.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announces new legal initiatives for veterans while surrounded by service members.
Delaney Brown / WUSF Public Media

At a press conference in Tampa Attorney General Ashley Moody announced two new initiatives aimed at providing increased legal resources for Florida’s veterans.

A growing number of programs try to treat PTSD by getting veterans into nature, even deep under the sea. 

A dedication ceremony was held today in Tampa for a new mental health clinic that treats post-9/11 veterans and military families.
Cohen Veterans Network

A new mental health clinic opened in Tampa that provides free or low-cost care to post-9/11 veterans and military families.

Glassblowing instructor Matthew Piepenbrock helps veterans create a piece in the Morean hot shop.
Beth Reynolds / Morean Arts Center

The Morean Arts Center in St. Petersburg runs a program that teaches glassblowing to veterans. Researchers at the University of South Florida recently evaluated the program, known as Operation Art of Valor.

A diver explores one of the 12 statues that currently make up the Circle of Heroes underwater veterans memorial.
Catalyst Communications Group

Scuba divers took the first official plunge to explore the new Circle of Heroes memorial in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. 

The first lawsuit concerning a bill signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis requiring convicted felons to pay court fees and fines before they can register to vote has ties to the Tampa Bay area. 

Disability attorney Michael Steinberg of Tampa filed a lawsuit on behalf of Kelvin Jones, a disabled veteran and former prisoner, almost immediately after DeSantis signed Senate Bill 7066 into law June 28. It has already been combined with a number of other similar cases. 

Army veteran Mike Monthervil (left) uses an adaptive controller to play video games as his VA recreational therapist Jamie Kaplan watches.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

By Stephanie Colombini

Some VA medical centers have realized that helping vets get back in the game can also help with their recovery.


Congress is considering legislation to encourage "outdoor therapy" for veterans with injuries or post-traumatic stress. Volunteer groups are already running similar programs in national parks.

 

A cooking program in upstate New York helps veterans find camaraderie in the kitchen.

Lt. Gerald Berry of Clearwater flew one of the planes that transported paratroopers behind enemy lines on D-Day. He was honored with eight other WWII vets during a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Nine World War II veterans were honored Thursday in a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base commemorating the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.


The James A. Haley Veterans' Hospital's new outpatient clinic in southern Hillsborough County is up and running.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Veterans in southern Hillsborough County no longer have to travel to the James A. Haley Veterans' Hospital in Tampa every time they need to see a doctor.


95 year-old WWII veteran Joe Perricone will walk at Hillsborough High School's graduation Saturday to finally receive his diploma in person.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

A 95 year-old World War II veteran will walk across the stage Saturday at Hillsborough High School's graduation ceremony to finally receive his diploma in person.


Encouraged by a Library of Congress initiative, volunteers and non-profit groups around the country are recording and preserving veterans' voices.

Honor Ride

Veterans and first responders affected by trauma will be recognized at the seventh annual Florida Honor Ride in St. Petersburg this Saturday.

Flickr Creative Commons

One of the federal programs affected by the partial government shutdown is the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, or SNAP. If the shutdown continues into March, funding for the program could run out. And in Florida that means a lot of low-income and homeless veterans may have to fend for themselves. More veterans in Florida rely on food stamps than any other state.

The VA says 8500 requests for wheelchairs, artificial limbs, and other equipment have waited more than 30 days. That's down from 64,000 requests last year.

The ninth annual veterans survey from the Jacksonville-based Wounded Warriors Project shows those surveyed made a 40 percent employment gain between 2014 and 2018.

Florida Matters host Robin Sussingham recently moderated a community discussion about veteran entrepreneurs with professionals who've been working on training and educating former soldiers on skills they need. 

Not only to integrate back into society, but to take on the risks and rewards of being an entrepreneur. The panel took place in front of a live audience at USF St. Petersburg, and we also took some questions from the audience. In this podcast, you'll hear about American Freedom Distillery and from one of its founders, former Green Beret Scott Neil.

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Gaetz, Democratic Ally Back Veterans’ Marijuana Bills

Nov 15, 2018

U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz and a Massachusetts Democrat on Wednesday introduced a package of legislation to change the Department of Veterans Affairs' medical marijuana practices in an attempt to make cannabis a more realistic treatment option for veterans.

WUSF Public Media

Transitioning out of the military can be tough, but some veterans are finding a new role in civilian life as business owners.


U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

According to the Department of Veteran Affairs, one in five veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.

But a newer form of psychotherapy is picking up traction in the veteran community.

Florida Matters is hosting a special panel discussion about veteran entrepreneurs in front of a live audience in St. Petersburg and we want you to join us.

A box containing a parchment scroll with the names of 1,220 World War I veterans from Florida, which was buried in Riverside’s Memorial Park in 1924, has been unearthed and unveiled.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

As he transitions out of the military this fall, Justin Duhe is going into business for himself. The 28-year-old Army linguist and cyber specialist bought a five acre coconut grove in Homestead, Fla. last year - sight unseen. He knew nothing about coconuts at the time.

University Area Community Development Corporation

Residents of  Tampa’s University Area will have more options for affordable housing in the coming months.

Dozens of new houses will be rented out for $600 to $700 per month. It's part of the University Area Community Development Corporation’s plan to transform the neighborhood sometimes derided as "Suitcase City," because of it's lack of permanent residents. The hope is that the program will increase home ownership rates.

Sen. Bill Nelson filed a bill last week that would provide veterans with access to medical marijuana at the VA and open doors for more research on the drug.

Families hope advances in DNA technology and thawing U.S./North Korean relations will help the government recover and identify long-missing remains of service members.

The new secretary of veterans affairs pledged to the American Legion on Wednesday that he won't privatize his agency's health care services even as it increases options for veterans to seek care in the private sector.

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