VMF May 2023 Newsletter


May 2023


VOL. 3, NO. 5

To view in PDF, click here

“Our Servicemen and women are serving throughout the world as guardians of peace–many of them away from their homes, their friends and their families. They are visible evidence of our determination to meet any threat to the peace with measured strength and high resolve. They are also evidence of a harsh but inescapable truth–that the survival of freedom requires great cost and commitment, and great personal sacrifice.”
     – President John F. Kennedy, 1963 proclamation of Armed Forces Day

Editor’s Message —

Greetings! On April 18th, President Biden issued an Executive Order on Increasing Access to High-Quality Care and Supporting Caregivers. Why an Executive Order?  It has proved increasingly difficult to get any legislation passed in Congress on this topic. Care continues to increase in cost and the availability of care workers is steadily decreasing. This affects many citizens’ daily lives and is especially critical for U.S. citizens because often care costs more than the salary one might earn. This usually means that a family member must give up an outside job in order to care for children or older members of the family. This is also a problem on military bases where there is always a waiting list for before and after school programs.

President Biden stated “It is the policy of my Administration to enable families — including our military and veteran families — to have access to affordable, high-quality care and to have support and resources as caregivers themselves.  It is also the policy of my Administration to ensure that the care workforce is supported, valued, and paid well.  Additionally, care workers should have the free and fair choice to join a union.”

The highlights of the Executive Order include more available and affordable child care and long-term care for families - including military families, easier home-based care for Veterans, increased pay for Head Start teachers and other providers, job quality for long-term care workers, support for family caregivers with services like respite care, and the building of child care facilities for Native American and Alaska Native children. 

Let’s contact our U.S. Senators and Representatives and remind them how important available and affordable childcare and long-term care are for all U.S. families.

Let us take some time on World Press Freedom Day on May 3 to remember our fearless real journalists who often put their lives on the line to guarantee that we are kept up to date on situations that affect our daily lives. More than 300 were detained worldwide last year.  The month of May also includes Public Service Recognition Week, celebrated since 1985, to honor those who serve our nation as federal, state, county, local and tribal government employees and Memorial Day, observed on the last Monday of the month, to honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military defending our American freedoms. Take a moment to attend a special Memorial Day ceremony or organize your own ceremony. 

One top concern still to take care of is the Equal Rights Amendment which Senator Schumer will be presenting in the Senate but there doesn't seem to be enough support to pass it. By the time you read this, the vote will probably have taken place and if there was a miracle, it would have passed but if not, WHAT CAN YOU DO? Contact your 2 Senators asking them to vote for SJRes 4.  Shari Temple, our DA ERA Task Force Chair, needs us to sign the petition created by Carolyn Maloney, a long time advocate for ERA - Support the Equal Rights Amendment | Sign the Petition (sign4era.org). 

Sign now and join the first signer Sen. Schumer and second signer Gloria Steinem!

peonies.jpegLet’s finish the job!

Terese Sarno

Please join our caucus to show your support for the U.S. military!


Joe Biden Launches His Campaign For President: Let's Finish the Job

“The stakes could not be higher for women across America. I will continue to fight politically-driven attacks on women’s health. But let’s be clear – the American people must continue to use their vote as their voice, and elect a Congress who will pass a law restoring the protections of Roe v Wade.              –President Joe Biden

President Biden: Supreme Court’s Decision in Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA

Biden Signs Executive Order That Aims to Make Child Care Cheaper 

Leaders, Caregivers, Advocates and More Applaud President Biden’s Executive Order 

Increasing Access to High-Quality Care and Supporting Caregivers | The White House

WATCH LIVE: Biden gives remarks following executive order on expanding child care

Biden turns to Steph Curry, DoorDash and others to advance nutrition and hunger goals 

The Biden-Harris Administration’s Record on Protecting Access to Medication Abortion

President Biden Announces Plan to Expand Health Coverage to DACA Recipients

Vice President Harris: Fifth Circuit’s Decision in Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA

Veteran returns after 14-year exile under Biden effort to rectify "unjust" deportations

Republicans Face Setbacks in Push to Tighten Voting Laws on College Campuses

Fox News settles Dominion Voting Systems defamation lawsuit 

Here Are the Winners and Losers of Fox News Settlement With Dominion

Election defamation lawsuits go far beyond Fox and Dominion


Stars and Stripes Veterans Benefits Guide now available online 

Your 2023 Military Times Pay and Benefits Guide

Veterans Living Overseas                            Signing In To VA.gov

Making government services easier to find       Update Your Insurance Beneficiary

Good news for Veterans and caregivers           Veteran discounts available year round

In case you missed it: Webinar to avoid PACT Act scams and identity theft!

Separation Health Assessment Part A required on transitioning service members claims 

VA Benefits For Spouses, Dependents, Survivors, And Family Caregivers 

How to Avoid the Military 'COLA Trap' by Getting Smart About Your Retirement Date

About VA DIC For Spouses, Dependents, And Parents 

Fast facts about new toxic exposure screening for Veterans

Disability Housing Grants For Veterans    Native American Direct Loan | Veterans Affairs

Find your next job with help from an American Corporate Partners mentor

Veterans, Gold Star Families: free lifetime pass to national parks, wildlife refuges, other public lands    New pass provides Veterans free lifetime access/ waived recreation fees.


"Word to the Nation: Guard zealously your right to serve in the Armed Forces, for without them, there will be no other rights to guard." – President John F. Kennedy

Calendar 2023 & Events


National Military Appreciation Month

Month of the Military Caregiver

May 1 – Silver Star Service Banner Day

May 1 – Loyalty Day “Today, we salute the Americans whose hard work and sacrifice have strengthened our Nation in common cause…” President Joseph R. Biden

May 3 – World Press Freedom Day   30th Anniversary    Who Is Evan Gershkovich? 

May 4 – National Day of Prayer

May 5 – Mindfulness Meditation 11:00 am to 12 noon ET offered via telephone: 1-404-397-1596 or 1-833-558-0712 (Toll Free)  Access code: 433 794 55

May 7-13 – National Correctional Officers Week

May 7-13 – Public Service Recognition Week

May 8 – VE Day

May 11-13 – WELCOME HOME! ~The National Mall, Washington
~A Nation Honors our Vietnam Veterans and their Families

The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration Welcome Home! May 11-13, 2023, Washington, D.C.

Vietnam Veterans who cannot attend an event can receive a Vietnam Veteran Lapel Pin by providing a current mailing address here.

Veteran Lapel Pin-Fact Sheet

May 12 – Military Spouse Appreciation Day

May 13 – VMF Caucus Steering Committee 07:00 ET WebEx 

May 13 – Children of Fallen Patriots Day

May 15 – Peace Officers Memorial Day

May 18 – International Museum Day - focus: sustainability and wellbeing

May 20 – Armed Forces Day 

May 20-25 – National Veterans Golden Age Games,
National Veterans Golden Age Games Event & Sport Schedule

May 22 – Maritime Day

May 29 – Memorial Day     American Monuments in Europe 

Upcoming DA Activities


Rep.Takano: "They fought for OUR freedom, and they deserve that same freedom"
“Criminalizing, infantilizing, and denying women veterans’ equal access to the full spectrum of healthcare at VA – including comprehensive reproductive healthcare – is unpatriotic, and an affront to the millions who have worn the uniform. House Democrats are committed to ensuring women veterans have equal access to the full spectrum of care at VA – including reproductive healthcare.”

Senate votes to keep new VA abortion policy in place
“The hard right is telling our veterans that they'll be treated as second-class citizens, and we say no way…Despite everything our veterans have given to our country, it's outrageous. It's wrong. It's dangerous, and it ain't going to happen.”
                                                                     –Senate Majority Leader C. Schumer, D-N.Y

Support a Congressional Gold Medal for the WWI Hello Girls!
Tell your Senators and Representative that the Hello Girls Deserve a Congressional Gold Medal. Find your state's Hello Girls, and write to Congress.
S.815  and  H.R.1572  Senate and House bills to award a Congressional Gold Medal to the female telephone operators of the Army Signal Corps, known as the "Hello Girls"

Bill proposing four-day workweek floated in Congress
“For more than 80 years, the five-day, 40-hour workweek has been the standard for Americans.” Rep. Mark Takano, D-Calif., is looking to change that. His 32 Hour Work Week Act would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act to ensure that non-exempt employees would receive overtime pay after putting in 32 hours of work.

Rep. Takano to Lead the Equality Act in the 118th Congress

TAKE ACTION: Urge Lawmakers to Fix the GI Bill Situation for Americans Abroad

Senator seeks to resolve GI Bill payments problem for veterans studying overseas 

House VA committee to weigh restoring GI Bill benefits for defrauded veterans

Menendez Introduces Legislation to Expand Education Opportunities for U.S. Veterans

Congress returns from recess with a big to-do list




Military Exposures & Your Health - 2022 - Issue 8 

US military hospital to replace 70-year-old Landstuhl is on track for 2027, officials say

Five VA apps that help Veterans and their families manage stress

Building Better Caregivers online workshop

Invite your caregiver to your next video visit 

News for family caregivers

Challenge, adventure awaits Veterans at 2023 VA Summer Sports Clinic
June 4-9, 2023, San Diego – Registration is now open. www.summersportsclinic.va.gov

Get Prescription Refills Quick and Easy with the VA Health and Benefits App.
(N.B. Germany’s mail system-including APO-cannot be used to receive prescriptions.)

Apply For Health Care

The PACT Act And Your VA Benefits

HASC Congresswomen Condemn Senator Tuberville for Blocking Military Nominations and Access to Reproductive Healthcare for Servicewomen and Their Families

On International Transgender Day of Visibility, Menendez, Booker Urge President Biden to Protect Transgender Americans, Expand Access to Gender-Affirming Care

Copayment exemption for American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans 

New VA practice simplifies care for Veterans

Live Whole Health #164: Acupressure self-care for neck pain

Live Whole Health Episode #165: Take 12

Live Whole Health #166: Breath as a tool for health and well-being 

Live Whole Health #167: Giving yourself time

Live Whole Health #168: Sleep is an essential for our bodies


Education support - VA Careers

Apply now to receive new Vet Center Scholarship

VA Education And Training Benefits

Foreign Schools: Education benefits are offered to eligible Veterans to attend approved programs at foreign schools. Visit the VA Foreign School Information for Students page to learn more. You can use the WEAMS Institution Search tool to find foreign schools with approved programs.

Veteran Recognition:

WWII veteran Morton Katz is almost 104 and now his stories are in a new book 

Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program Helps Native American Veteran 

At 100, WWII veteran Gordon Kirk ‘still trying to be of assistance to others’

National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic highlights

“Survivor” champ Mike Gabler donating $1 million prize to Veteran causes

Okinawa’s military community turns out in force to honor war correspondent Ernie Pyle 

2023 National #Veterans #CreativeArts Festival - Natasha M

2023 National #Veterans #CreativeArts Festival - Kevin D 

2023 National #Veterans #CreativeArts Festival - Michael H

2023 Military Appreciation Month Discounts    Veteran discounts available year round 

Military Discounts for Major League Baseball Games

Vets shop tax-free for life. You earned this benefit!  

Your VA ID Card is the proof you need for discounts

Click here for our Spotlight Taking Care of Our People
Click here for our Podcast & Social Media Recommendations
here for our Poetry Corner
here for our Film and Book Recommendations
here for our Brain-Zone Quiz
here for our Educational Resources
here for our Virtual Museum


WebEx link for May 13, 2023 at 07:00 ET

The Global VMF Caucus Steering Committee meets once a month. 

All Democrats Abroad members are welcome to attend. 


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Please join our caucus to show your support for the U.S. military!


Terese Sarno (Germany)

Veterans and Military Families Caucus Chair:

Kee Adams Evans (Guatemala)