The TAPS Daily - September 2, 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.
- U.S. Army Replaces Fort Hood Commander, Ramps Up Vanessa Guillén Inquiry
The Army has removed Maj. Gen. Scott Efflandt from his post as Fort Hood's senior commander, a week after another soldier from the base was found dead.
- Soldier to Receive Medal of Honor for Iraq Hostage Rescue
Army Sgt. Maj. Pat Payne will become the first service member to receive the Medal of Honor for actions taken as a part of Operation Inherent Resolve.
- Trump gives CDC broad authority to stop evictions during pandemic
Under the executive order, the CDC may prevent any landlord from evicting a tenant in order to prevent spread of COVID-19. It also provides assistance to property owners as well as tenants.
- Social Security trust fund to run out by 2031: CBO
The pandemic has wreaked havoc on several of the major government trust funds.
- 'You're disgusting' — Biracial military family welcomed to Kansas City with racist taunts
(Task & Purpose)
They’ve lived all over the world, so it’s not a revelation that there’s racism in it. But they’d never experienced it to this degree, this much, and this vocal until they moved to Kansas City.
- 88-Yearr-Old Holocaust Survivor Fulfills Lifelong Dream Of Graduating From High School
Miriam Schreiber is proof that it’s never too late to make your dreams come true.
- Old Navy to pay store employees to work election polls in November
Old Navy is taking a different approach to get employees involved in the democratic process.
Suicide Prevention Awareness Month News
- Rep. Takano Announces 10 New Bills To Be Considered On Veteran Suicide Prevention
House Committee of Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Mark Takano (D-CA) announced new bills that will complement legislation to the Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act.
- Second Lady Karen Pence Highlights Suicide Prevention Research in Charleston
Second Lady Karen Pence joined by Acting Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) Pamela Powers, visited Charleston to learn more about veteran suicide prevention efforts. TAPS is proud to be a member of the White House’s PREVENTS task force.
- Help Prevent Suicide
By starting conversations and providing support we all can help prevent suicide and save lives.
TAPS In the News
- 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 secretary attacks reports of slowdowns in mailed prescriptions as 'conspiracy theories'
VA Secretary Robert Wilkie is dismissing reports of mailed prescriptions delays as “conspiracy theories” that could discourage some from using the postal service for critical medications.
- At least 15 soldiers at Fort Hood have disappeared or died this year, Texas lawmaker says
Texas lawmakers are calling for immediate investigation and restructuring of Fort Hood’s command as base gains notoriety for highest number of murders and sexual assaults in Army.
- New coalition urges states to get absentee ballots in time to troops, families, overseas voters
The Military Vote Coalition representing service members and families sent letters to all state election officials urging absentee ballots be sent by September 19 — as required by law. TAPS is proud to be a founding member of this non-partisan coalition.
- Opioids, other drugs inadequately safeguarded by CENTCOM pharmacies, investigators find
Due to lax security, poor record keeping and lack of accountability, pharmacies and medical warehouses in U.S. Central Command could have lost prescription drugs over past five years.
- Court-Martialing Military Retirees Should Be Stopped Until Congress Acts, Lawyers Say
The military's ability to court-martial some retirees and not others is a "textbook violation of equal protection," an opening brief filed this week with a top court of appeals says.
- Senators to Esper: Reverse Your Decision to Kill Stars and Stripes
A bipartisan effort is underway to save the military’s only independent news source, whose origins date to the Civil War. The Pentagon is set to dissolve Stars & Stripes by September 30.
Grief / Mental Health / Wellness
- Maintaining Your Mental Health This School Year
Whether you are distance-learning or are going back to your school’s campus for the upcoming semester, it is important to maintain good mental health.
- The Grief Kids Are Feeling Right Now Is Valid
Telling kids they’re not grieving unless they’ve lost a loved one during the pandemic sends an unhealthy message.
- How Can We Help Grieving Relatives Earlier?
A research project has now examined both the consumption of medicine and contact to general practitioners among bereaved relatives.
- SAMHSA’s 2020 National Recovery Month Webinar Series
National Recovery Month focuses on educating Americans that substance use treatment and mental health services can help those struggling to live healthy and rewarding lives.
- Sgt. Maj. of the Army: If you 'only see green,' you're not seeing the whole soldier
At an Association of the United States Army’s panel on race, the Sergeant Major of the Army talked with NCOs about the tough questions at the forefront of the nation's discussion on racial inequality.
- The Next Major Battlefield Threat Facing U.S. Troops May Be Undetectable
COVID-19 illustrates the ability of biological threats to cripple military readiness.
- National Guard helps operate Indiana prison amid COVID-19
National Guard units are helping operate a northern Indiana prison that’s faced with staffing shortages after several prison workers were stricken with COVID-19.
- Navy helicopter team rescues hiker hurt in Olympic Mountains
A helicopter crew from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island rescued a hiker who was severely injured in a fall Sunday evening in the Buckhorn Wilderness area of the Olympic Mountains.
- Soldier killed in vehicle collision during training at Fort Bliss
(Task & Purpose)
A Fort Bliss soldier was killed in a military vehicle collision during training Friday evening.
- As Veterans Battle Pandemic Isolation, Organizations Adapt to Meet Their Needs
COVID-19 has exacerbated feelings of isolation for many veterans and caused a surge in demand for veteran mental health support organizations.
- Paralyzed World War II Veterans Invented Wheelchair Basketball
Disabled WWII veterans helped popularize wheelchair sports and change the game for the disability rights movement.
- Florida WWII veteran recovers from COVID-19 in time for 75th anniversary of war’s end
(Stars & Stripes)
On the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, Donald Betts, 99, reminisces about the Allied victory and his own harrowing victory over COVID-19.
Military Family News
- ‘Two years is just too long’: Grieving parents await answers in 2018 death of Lt. j.g. McCalla
More than two years after Lt. j.g. Asante McCalla's death, the Navy has yet to determine what happened to the only son of Alicia and Howard McCalla.
- Stepbrothers reunite on Afghanistan deployment for first time since 2001
(Stars & Stripes)
The last time these soldier step brothers had seen each other was the year the war in Afghanistan started — and one of them was a baby.
- Mark your calendars! National Museum of the Marine Corps reopens on September 8
The National Museum of the Marine Corps near Quantico, Virgina, will reopen to the public on September 8.
Banner photo courtesy of the School of Advanced International Studies | John Hopkins University.