By Kenneth Fenner on April 11, 2017
Joy, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, lost her business amid the 2008 financial crisis, and was forced to live out of her van. Being homeless made even relatively simple tasks complicated, but over time, Joy found that she was growing accustomed to homelessness, making it even harder for her to get back to work. It wasn’t until Joy enrolled in the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency’s Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program, or HVRP, that she was able to get back on her feet. The center helped her find a home and a sense of purpose, and even hired her as a veteran outreach specialist.
Funded by the Labor Department, HVRP provides services to help homeless veterans reenter the workforce, which in turn gets them back on track in other aspects of life. Services include occupational, classroom and on-the-job training, as well as job search and placement assistance, including follow-up services. Real employment opportunities help veterans reach both financial stability and independence.
Read more: Helping Homeless Veterans Get Back on Their Feet
By Cheryl Pellerin DoD News, Defense Media Activity
WASHINGTON, April 6, 2017 - The Veterans Affairs and Defense departments are introducing to service members who have Servicemembers Group Life Insurance an online enrollment system called the SGLI On-line Enrollment System that enables active duty and eligible reserve and National Guard members to manage their group and family coverage online.
SGLI provides $400,000 in automatic life insurance coverage to service members when they enlist. SGLI members get automatic coverage for dependent children and non-military spouses under the family SGLI program.
SOES (SGLI On-line Enrollment System) availability begins with the Navy in April and to the rest of the uniformed services later in the year -- the Air Force in July, the Army in August, the Marine Corps in October and the Coast Guard and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in December.
SOES is the online replacement for the paper form SGLI Election and Certificate, SGLV 8286.
The new system eliminates unclear designations and missing or incomplete forms -- problems identified with the paper-based system -- and ensures all insurance holders receive the latest information about changes affecting their coverage.
"Now, the Navy, and soon all of our nation's service members, will be able to manage their coverage and beneficiaries online - just like their private-sector counterparts" said Thomas Murphy, VA's acting undersecretary for benefits said in a statement.
"Moving from a cumbersome paper-based process to an online self-service system brings the SGLI program in line with insurance industry best practices," he added. "SOES will allow our troops to make fast and easy changes to their life insurance coverage and beneficiary information at any time."
The VA has collaborated with the Defense Department, the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, the Defense Manpower Data Center, and the uniformed services to develop the SOES system.
The system will be available through DMDC's milConnect web application. There, service members can review personal, health care and personnel information from one source, the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System.
To ensure that service members have support while using the new system, VA is working with DoD and the individual uniformed services to train key service personnel as SOES becomes available to each branch.
For more information about SOES, service members should go to the website using the Internet Explorer browser and a DS-logon or common access card. Click on Life Insurance, SOES -- SGLI Online Enrollment System, under the "Benefits" tab.