Take a second to imagine yourself being homeless
Take a second to imagine yourself being homeless. No house, No anything. The solution is easy right? Start working at Mcdonalds until you get on your feet again. Now imagine you’re a homeless veteran. Same situation, or is it worse? While you’re starving, you begin having a flashback to your best friend getting his face shot off, and your other best friend getting blown up right beside you. You come back to reality and tell yourself “it should of be me.” You can’t go work at Mcdonalds because your a “psychopath”. So what do you do? Homelessness started to begin in the 1950’s/1960’s. Even though some people think that veterans being homeless is their own fault, it’s not. They have fought for our country, maybe even suffered the consequences, and also may have problems we don’t know about.
Many people debate over homelessness. There has been many debates about what we should do with homeless veterans. Most of the time the topic is forgotten and the next biggest issue is up for debate. Returned soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan are twice as likely to become homeless. Not only that, but 90% of homeless veterans don’t have family or friends and are completely alone. These people have fought for our country and we give them nothing in return beside the words, “thank you for your service.”. If the people in the government were homeless this would be a complete different story. When they reach bottom the rest of society judges them by calling them lazy, useless, and even disgusting. Not only is America not helping them out of poverty and starvation, but it burying them by making them seem like they are purposely and willing suffering.
The most common thing about homeless people is unemployment. Some homeless people you come across may just be lazy, don’t want to work, or just looking for free money, for who knows what. According to Military.com the unemployment rate in April 2018 for veterans was 3.7%. Veterans find it harder to find a job then the normal person in the world. They have to figure out how to put their military work into civil work. Even if they fit the work criteria they still have to transition their skills, and if they can’t, they will not be hired. Furthermore, the employers may not understand military terminology and they’re not going to take time to learn. Another problem they come across is not knowing how to write a resume or how to prepare for an interview. Most veterans go into the military right after highschool and come back not completing college. There are many programs out there for veterans to learn how to be civil again, they just have to be willing to put in the work. Some other employers may not just want the veteran in their work environment because they may stereotype them, thinking they are rigid, or not safe due to a mental illness, etc. Finally, veterans may not have the right certificate to do the career they want to pursue. That means they have to go to college, which they have no way to pay for.
One thing that upsets me is that in America, a NFL football player gets paid more than a veteran. So it makes sense how some end up homeless. In the military you get paid according to your rank, so the higher your rank, the higher your paycheck. The lowest rank you can be classified is an E1 Private, which earns $1,638.30 a month. The highest rank is an E9 which makes $5,173.80 to $8,033.10 a month. If a homeless veteran does receive any money, they will probably be using it on drugs or alcohol.
Some people think we take care of our veterans, and others think we don’t take enough care of our veterans. I feel we could take a bit more care of them. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is a very good place to start for struggling veterans. The VA provides the millions of American veterans and their dependents with health care services, benefits programs and access to national cemeteries. They are responsible for providing medical services to 5.5 million veterans across the U.S. The VA has many benefits. For example, compensation, education & training, home loans, insurance, rehabilitation & employment. They will also help with burial and memorial services.
As you would expect, most veterans suffer from personal problems. Which mostly consist of a mental illness or drug/alcohol abuse. Most frequently you will see a veteran suffering from Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder or PTSD. PTSD is cause by witnessing a horrible experience that can create permanent mental pictures. They can become frighting and traumatic, and your mind can play them over and over again. PTSD can affect anyone. It doesn’t seek out the weak, lazy, the introspective, or the unlucky. Paranoia is another PTSD symptom. It makes a person unjustly suspicious. People who are paranoid may seem unusually jumpy because they are always on guard for another disaster. On top of suffering from PTSD the veterans can also suffer from depression. Depression is frequently caused by a combination of genetic psychological and environmental factors. The causes are many ; varied and not everything is know about why people develop depression. If depression is not treated, it can get worse. Too often, untreated depression leads to suicide but the symptoms of serious depression are not always recognized. If you know a homeless veteran, you can help them by encouraging them to join a support group. Then they will be able to follow a treatment plan, and be in a place where depression is understood and accepted.