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"We believe surviving spouses and dependent children need an organization dedicated solely to their needs, concerns, and welfare.”

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  • 14 Sep 2017 1:02 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    It is the time of year to renew your Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. membership.  Gold Star Wives needs you, your support, your ideas and your strength to continue to work on improving our benefits. 

    As a result of your dues and donations GSW has made much progress including:  

    ·   Effective January 2015, the Fry Scholarship which previously had been only for surviving children, has been extended to surviving spouses of those who died in the line of duty on or after September 11, 2001.

    ·   The creation of an Office for Survivors within the Department of Veterans Affairs (Moira Flanders, Director, 1-202-461-1077) to assure a continuity of equitable benefits and an improved delivery of benefit information to survivors.

    ·   Increased education benefits for an extra 10 years for spouses of active duty deaths

    ·   Reinstatement to receive DIC if you have remarried and that remarriage has ended in death or divorce. 

    ·   Retention of DIC upon remarriage after age 57.  If you remarry, report your new name and address to the VA.

    ·   TriCare for Life (TFL) with a prescription benefit for those over 65 and eligible for TriCare.

    ·   ChampVA for Life (CFL) with a prescription benefit for those over 65 and eligible for ChampVA.

    ·   ChampVA benefits for spouses who remarry after age 55.

    ·   Equal cost of Living adjustment (COLA) for DIC widows.

    In 2018, the Government Relations Committee is focusing on the following areas: 

    ·   DIC Increase

    ·   SBP/DIC Offset

    ·   TRICARE proposed fee increases

    ·   Education

    We continue to be available for your questions and concerns when you have “no place to turn.”  It is only with your continued fellowship, dues and donations that the above increased benefits have been accomplished. Without you there would be no Gold Star Wives organization to continue to reach out to new surviving spouses and to maintain our benefits as well as to seek new and improved ones.

    Thanks and best wishes, 

    Crystal L. Wenum
    National President

  • 31 Aug 2017 12:07 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    A video of Michael Reagan, speaker at the GSW 2017 National Convention, can be found online. 

    Link to video

  • 16 Aug 2017 9:32 PM | Debra Kraus (Administrator)

    https://www.militarytimes.com/education-transition/education/2017/08/16/trump-signed-the-forever-gi-bill-here-are-11-things-you-should-know/      


  • 2 Aug 2017 10:03 AM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    Dear Friends,

    This afternoon, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it has now completed its review of the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (PCAFC) and will now reinstate full operations, with significant changes to the program that will affect policy and execution moving forward.

    Here are four things you need to know about the changes to the PCAFC:

    1) Veterans Health Administration Directive (VHA) 1152VHA Directive 1152 was issued to all PCAFC staff and posted to the US. Department of Veterans Affairs website. This directive will serve as VA policy ensuring consistent execution of the PCAFC, and will be applied uniformly across all VISNs. The directive outlines:

    • Program operations and staff responsibilities;
    • Veteran and caregiver eligibility requirements;
    • Procedures for discharges from the program, and available benefits.

    Highlight: “Family caregivers in the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers are to be recognized as collaborative partners with the Veteran’s primary care team in ensuring the overall care and well-being of the Veteran.”

    2) PCAFC Discharge Letter:  The VA has developed a template discharge letter to be used when communicating program discharges to veterans and their caregivers. This letter will ensure a consistent message is sent to those veterans discharged from the program, while also providing plain language explanations for the reason behind the revocation.

    Highlight: the discharge letter now includes space for the CSC to list local resources that may help caregivers as they transition out of the program.

    3) PCAFC Roles, Responsibilities, and Requirements: The VA has updated its Roles, Responsibilities, and Requirements document that will be used in the execution of the PCAFC. This document, posted on the VA website, has been reviewed by the VA’s Privacy Office, VA’s National Center for Health Care Ethics and VA’s Office of General Counsel to ensure its compliance with current regulations. This version of the Roles, Responsibilities, and Requirements document will be used VISN-wide to maintain consistency across the program, and caregivers will have the opportunity to walk through the document with their CSC upon entry into the program.

    Highlight: Your CSC is there to explain any parts of the application process or Roles, Responsibilities, and Requirements document with you. If you have further questions about your eligibility and want to talk to an outside provider, we encourage you to contact your local VSO, who can walk you through all your options.

    4) If you would like more information on actions that the VA has taken to review the PCAFC, please refer to the Strategic Review overview developed by the VA. If you have questions about your case or eligibility status in the PCAFC, we encourage you to contact your Caregiver Support Coordinator, local VSO, or to email the Foundation.

    Find our full write-up on the changes to the PCAFC and future updates to the program here.

    Thank you for entrusting your stories regarding your experiences with the VA Caregiver Program to the Foundation. We will continue to advocate on behalf of military caregivers nationwide, and we welcome comments, questions, or concerns. Please feel free to contact us at info@elizabethdolefoundation.org.

    Sincerely,


    Steve Schwab
    Executive Director


    If you are a caregiver to a veteran who served prior to September 11, 2001, we encourage you to visit www.hiddenheroes.org to learn more about what we’re doing to advocate on behalf of pre-9/11 caregivers.


  • 24 Jul 2017 8:37 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    Senators vote compensation tradeoffs that the House ...

    The Senate Armed Services Committee has voted to make permanent the Special Survivor Indemnity Allowance (SSIA) set to expire next spring, and paid monthly to 63,000 ...

    https://www.stripes.com/senators-vote-compensation-tradeoffs-that-the-house-avoided-1.477910#.WWr6OYWcHIV

       
 
           

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc.

Gold Star Wives is a Congressionally Chartered non-profit service organization that is capable of providing services to the active duty and service-connected military surviving spouses.

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Birmingham, Alabama Office
P.O. Box 361986
Birmingham, AL 35236

Email: info@goldstarwives.org
Phone: 1-888-751-6350

Washington DC Office
200 N.Glebe Road Rm 435
Arlington, VA 22203-3755

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. is a non-profit 501(C)4 National Military Widow/Widowers Service Organization chartered by the United States Congress. Donations are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes but may be deductible as trade or business expenses.

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