Governor Youngkin Continues Commitment To Making Virginia Best State for Veterans and Military Families, New Gold Standard Digital Hub Will Ensure Veterans And National Guardsman Can More Easily Access Earned Benefits
(L-R) Virginia Secretary of Veterans and Defense Affairs Craig Crenshaw; Donna Williams, Benefits Director (DVS); Timothy MacArthur, Director, George Mason University Veterans & Service Members Legal Clinic (M-VETS); Daniel Gade, Commissioner, Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS); Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin; Medal of Honor recipient Colonel Paris Davis; Richard Rodriguez, Commander, American Legion Post 139; Anouck McCall, Business Manager, American Legion Post 139.
Governor Glenn Youngkin has announced the rollout of the Gold Standard Digital Hub for veterans and their families. This new tool serves to ensure veterans and military families can easily access information regarding earned benefits and resources tailored to their needs.
State-of-the-art technology is incorporated into the Digital Hub that will serve as a single point of access to all veteran centric resources available for cross-agency support. In addition, access to information from veteran service organizations and non-profits will be available in one seamless single point of access.
Governor Youngkin made the announcement May 11 at the new American Legion Post 139 headquarters in Arlington. The new American Legion facility provides affordable apartments, where eligible veterans will be given priority placement, as well as a modern 6,000-square-foot facility that houses veteran-focused programming in its private counseling spaces. The facility also includes new offices for the Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS) and the George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School’s Veterans and Service Members Legal Clinic.
“Making Virginia the best place for veterans, military service members and their families to live and the number one state for veterans to retire has been a priority of mine since day one of our administration. We want to embrace the military experience of each Virginia veteran and guardsman and honor their service and sacrifice by providing gold standard service in the Commonwealth,” said Governor Youngkin.
“Finding and gaining access to earned benefits and local resources can be a challenging and daunting experience, said Virginia Secretary of Veterans and Defense Affairs Craig Crenshaw. “With more than 690,000 veterans calling Virginia home and thousands transitioning from active-duty service each year in Virginia, we want all to know that Virginia offers each of them a home in which to continue to live, work and thrive.”
In addition to the new Gold Standard Digital Hub rollout, the following military and veteran- friendly key initiatives have recently been launched in the Commonwealth:
- 23 Bills Relating to Veteran and Military Family Initiatives Signed into Legislation
Twenty-three bills have been signed into legislation, including major initiatives such as the reduction in retirement pay and real property taxes for eligible veterans, grants that support projects that enhance military readiness and the quality of life for military communities, and reduced fee or free access for lifetime fishing and hunting licenses for eligible veterans.
- Critical Positions Filled
The Department of Veterans Services (DVS) has reinforced its dedication to veteran suicide prevention and awareness by developing and filling a new position completely dedicated to veteran suicide and opioid addiction prevention. In addition, over 9,000 service members, veterans and family members have been screened for suicide risk by DVS team members and over 1,100 community partners have been trained in suicide prevention.
- Support for Military Spouses
With over 53,000 military spouses residing in Virginia, DVS has also created and filled two new positions dedicated solely to military spouse support.
- Support for Transitioning Service Members and Veterans Transitioning To Civilian Careers
The Virginia Values Veterans (V3) Program has surpassed over 100,000 veterans hired through this program. Virginia continues to lead the way in creating innovative programs to assist veterans translate their valuable skill sets to the civilian workplace. Additional programs such as the Military Medics and Corpsmen (MMAC) Program, Troops to Trucks and Troops to Teachers are also thriving in the Commonwealth by providing veterans a pathway to serve as integral parts of Virginia’s workforce.
“DVS is proud to continue its mission of serving those who served, said Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS) Commissioner Daniel Gade. “Providing military families with outstanding personal service and efficient access to resources they need to obtain a high-quality education, training and great jobs is the best way we can express our appreciation for their service.”
About the Virginia Department of Veterans Services
The Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS) is a state government agency with more than 40 locations across the Commonwealth of Virginia. DVS traces its history to 1928 and the establishment of the Virginia War Service Bureau to assist Virginia’s World War I veterans.
Today, DVS assists veterans and their families in filing claims for federal veterans benefits; provides veterans and family members with linkages to services including behavioral healthcare, housing, employment, education, and other programs. The agency operates four long-term care facilities offering in-patient skilled nursing care, Alzheimer’s/memory care, and short-term rehabilitation for veterans; and provides an honored final resting place for veterans and their families at three state veterans cemeteries. It operates the Virginia War Memorial, the Commonwealth’s tribute to Virginia’s men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice from World War II to the present. For more information, please visit www.dvs.virginia.