The TAPS Daily - July 6, 2020
Welcome to The TAPS Daily - your source for some of the latest news, resources, and thought pieces from across the military and veteran community during the COVID-19 response.
- A grim July: U.S. sees 250,000 new coronavirus cases in just five days
Five days into July, 250,000 new coronavirus cases were reported across the United States, with no sign the numbers will get any better.
- 'We Need Help': People At Higher Coronavirus Risk Fear Losing Federal Unemployment
Many people with underlying medical conditions are worried about what's going to happen at the end of the month when unemployment pay offered during the coronavirus pandemic runs out.
- 'Extremely nauseating,' Gold star mom reacts to Trump's denial
Becky Whetstone, a Gold Star mother whose son served and died in Afghanistan, tells CNN's Kate Bolduan how she feels about allegations of potential Russian bounties on U.S. troops.
- Remains of missing Fort Hood soldier identified as Vanessa Guillen, family says
Army investigators have confirmed the remains found in a shallow grave are indeed those of the Fort Hood soldier who went missing more than two months ago.
- House spending bill bars military construction funding for border wall
A House spending bill for military construction would block funding from going to President Trump’s wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
- First Black man nominated to lead Air Force Academy
(Air Force Times)
The Air Force announced Thursday that President Donald Trump nominated Lt. Gen. Richard Clark to be the academy’s next superintendent.
- Is It Safe To Go Back To The Dentist Despite Surging Coronavirus Cases?
Dental offices have begun seeing patients return for routine procedures after previously shutting down to all but emergency visits during the coronavirus pandemic.
TAPS In the News
- Climbing the Mountain of Grief Side by Side
TAPS Expeditions are outdoor therapeutic adventures that require participants to step out of their comfort zones, and foster growth in mind, body and spirit.
- We're All in This Together - COVID-19 Resources for American Public
Resources and support to help anyone facing the impacts of COVID-19.
- TAPS News Archive
Catch up on all the TAPS news stories over the years on the TAPS media resource page.
Government Relations / Benefits
- VA Lifts GI Bill Suspension for Blacklisted Colleges
The Department of Veterans Affairs announced it will lift restrictions on five schools it blacklisted over "deceptive" and "misleading" enrollment practices earlier this year.
- Bill would help wounded veterans and their caregivers
A bill co-sponsored by U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire would strengthen the Department of Veterans Affairs' caregiver program.
- Lawmaker wants investigator to look into white extremism and racial bias in the military
(Task & Purpose)
A prominent lawmaker is calling for investigation into the extent of white supremacists within the ranks and racial disparities in the military’s justice and promotion systems.
- During coronavirus era, government restriction of cannabis is dangerous for the veteran population
For many veterans cannabis is an effective medical treatment. But federal government restrictions on access and dispensing have become even more consequential during the pandemic.
- Military Hazardous Duty Pay Could Increase by 10% Under New Proposal
Troops could see hazardous duty pay increase by $25 next year under a provision added Wednesday to the House national defense authorization bill.
Grief / Mental Health / Wellness
- No-Cost Mental Health Support for Frontline Workers Now Available at Cohen Veterans Network
Building on its extensive background treating military veterans the Cohen Veterans Network (CVN) is now offering free services to pandemic first responders.
- A town replaced some cops with medics and mental health workers. It's worked for over 30 years
Around 30 years ago, a town in Oregon retrofitted an old van, staffed it with young medics and counselors and sent them to 911 calls that wouldn't necessarily require police intervention.
- Anxiety, depression increasing among mothers during the COVID-19 pandemic
More pregnant women and new mothers are experiencing symptoms of anxiety and depression during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study.
- With Pandemic-Related Stress, Abuse Against Kids Can Surge
(US News & World Report)
Stress from social distancing and isolation to stop the spread of COVID-19 can lead to increased family violence at home.
- 5 movies that can help you deal with grief and loss
Young or old, struggling or successful, change happens to us all. Movies are here to remind us that we are not alone – and that even the worst moments pass.
- Former DoD official in suicide prevention office wins whistleblower retaliation case
More than half a decade after publicly accusing DoD’s suicide prevention office of fraud and conflicts of interest, its former director has come out on top in a whistleblower retaliation case.
- Air Force Academy Confirms COVID-19 Cases Among Freshman Class
The U.S. Air Force Academy on Saturday confirmed members of its freshman cadet class have tested positive for COVID-19, but pushed back against reports indicating a massive outbreak.
- Coast Guard Academy alters training for incoming class due to COVID-19
COVID-19 has forced big changes for incoming class traditions at the Coast Guard Academy.
- From Moving to U.S. to Serving it: Woman Adopted from Russia Excels as Marine
Cpl. Veronika R. Gottschalk, an intelligence specialist with 3rd Marine Division shared her story of becoming a Marine after being adopted from Russia at the age of 6.
- Retiring National Guard Chief Pushes Again for a 'Space Guard'
The outgoing chief of the National Guard Bureau said there needs to be a role for the Guard in the newest military branch.
- Theodore Roosevelt sailor dies after 'medical emergency'
A sailor aboard the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 146 died Thursday “following a medical emergency,” the Navy said in a statement.
- Army Specialist Killed in Afghanistan Vehicle Rollover Accident
A 21-year-old soldier from Texas was killed Friday in southwestern Afghanistan, Pentagon officials announced Saturday night.
- As VA restores services at some facilities, more veterans are making use of telehealth services
The VA says it saw a more than 1000% increase in telehealth appointments, with virtual health care appointments in March totaling more than in all of 2019.
- Women Veterans Demand Justice for Spc. Vanessa Guillen
Close to 2,000 women veterans and servicewomen signed an open letter demanding a Congressional investigation into PFC Vanessa Guillen's disappearance.
- How to Hear Country Music Made by and for Combat Veterans
A music program designed for veterans helps them come to terms with post-traumatic stress issues; remember those they lost; and create art in a meaningful way.
Military Family News
- DoD looks to expand child care fee assistance pilot program
As child care options start to open in the era of coronavirus in some states, defense officials are looking where it might expand child care for more military families.
- Tips for Facing a Deployment Amid COVID-19
Yes, things will look a little different for this next deployment. But there are still resources available, and you can and will make it through.
- What to expect when flying United, American, Delta, Southwest during pandemic: comparison
(We Are The Mighty)
No two airlines have been exactly alike on pandemic related policies. Here's what you can expect on each airline.
- Nick Cordero, Broadway actor, dies at 41 after battle with COVID-19
Nick Cordero, a Broadway actor who had admirers across the world rallying for his recovery, has died after a battle with COVID-19.
- Charlie Daniels, "Devil Went Down to Georgia" singer, dies at age 83
Country music firebrand and fiddler Charlie Daniels, has died at age 83. The Nashville icon was a big supporter of veterans and their families.
Banner photo courtesy of the School of Advanced International Studies | John Hopkins University.