Disabled & Need LASIK?

Are you a service disabled veteran in need of LASIK surgery?

In 2015, the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) Foundation will launch an outreach effort to offer free LASIK surgery to our wounded veterans. The program will be undertaken in partnership with MVPVets, a California-based veterans’ service organization which provides training and mentorship to veterans transitioning from the military to the private sector.

Follow the link for more details!

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Notice For The Record

On March 10, 2015, Brian M. Alvey tendered his resignation as a member of the National Advisory Board.  This resignation was accepted immediately by CEO C. Blake Powers, and Mr. Alvey is no longer affiliated with Mission: VALOR in any capacity.

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Robin Paul/Roudebush VA — Our Position

While the e-mail(s???) by Robin Paul is despicable, it was a matter not addressed by management for months, then a sudden (and magical?) unspecified sanction was announced, and only after a firestorm of publicity erupted was an investigation launched.  Much more than a simple firing is needed to get to the bottom of this incident and the larger issues and problems with the VA it so aptly symbolizes.  As such, we have sent the following to the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency (PLA):

I am writing to make a formal request for an investigation by the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency of Robin Paul of the Roudebush VA Center in Indianapolis in regards any and all professional licenses held by her. While highly publicized, it is worth noting that her e-mail made light of veteran suicide and suicidal behavior; depicted veterans as “drug shopping” and otherwise misusing prescription medication; and, engaging in a variety of socially unacceptable, if not criminal, activities. These are not acceptable for someone working in the Behavioral Health and Human Services, Health Facility Administration, and Psychology fields.

The actions by Ms. Paul would appear to be extremely unprofessional and not in keeping with the standards expected and promoted by the Board. Further, her conduct would appear to also be extremely unethical and in stark violation of the rules and policies of the Board. I would further state that her actions would appear to have put an already at-risk population at even greater risk and as such constitute a complete abrogation of her professional obligations.

Further, her actions have reinforced popular misperceptions of all veterans, and that additional bigotry is adding to the problems already facing those troops and veterans trying to transition to civilian life. The stigma and false perceptions of PTS and other issues is already a major obstacle to employment and/or training for new careers, and the actions of Ms. Paul simply reinforce those barriers. When combined with the unacceptable rate of veteran suicide, her actions are clearly unacceptable and unprofessional.

It is my sincere hope that you will investigate her actions, and take an appropriate stand via sanctions or revocation of her license. I further hope you will share any actions taken to the widest extent possible, including any and all relevant professional organizations or certifying authorities.

Thank you very much for your immediate time and attention to this matter. I look forward to a timely response on this request.

C. Blake Powers, CEO

The following was sent to select members of the Indiana Legislative Delegation for their consideration:

The recent revelation of the e-mails by Robin Paul at the Roudebush Veteran’s Administration (VA) Center in Indianapolis once again highlight the horrific problems faced by far too many of our veterans at the VA. The actions by Ms. Paul also contribute to the bigotry and misperceptions faced by our troops and veterans, and that are – sadly – having a significant impact on veteran employment. While highly publicized, it is worth noting that her e-mail made light of veteran suicide and suicidal behavior; depicted veterans as “drug shopping” and otherwise misusing prescription medication; and, engaging in a variety of socially unacceptable, if not criminal, activities.

While popular sentiment is for her to be fired, as CEO of Mission: VALOR, a 501(c)(3) focused on practical solutions to the crisis in veteran employment, I would ask you not to seek such. It is my opinion that a simple firing will have no improvement in either her actions nor, more importantly, those of the VA.

Far too often, it seems that when someone is fired from the VA they simply move to a corresponding contractor or similar position with even better pay and benefits. Further, such firings tend to foster a victim mentality in those fired, reinforcing the very attitudes being censured. Finally, it also allows the VA to “Do Something” in a public way while not doing anything to address the core issues and problems that actions such as hers exemplify.

Instead, I call on you, the other members of the Indiana Congressional Delegation, and members of the appropriate Congressional Committees to:

  • Conduct a Congressional investigation into the e-mail and other activities by Robin Paul; the response of management at the Roudebush VA Center in Indianapolis to her e-mail at the time of sending and immediately after; the response of management after the e-mails became public; and, the rather sudden investigation they have announced.
  • Should the investigations by the VA and Congress verify the charges and activities by Ms. Paul and others in management, I strongly recommend significant demotion with corresponding reductions in pay for those highlighted rather than simple termination.
  • Use this opportunity to encourage or force real and substantive change in the administration of the VA, both locally and nationally.

The e-mail is clearly horrific, and constitutes a complete and total breech of professional ethics and the policies and procedures of the VA.   I am extremely concerned with both the fact that she was willing to put at-risk populations even further at risk, and at how her actions reinforce popular ignorance and bigotry about troops and veteans. Rather than do what is easy and simple, I ask you to act so that this opportunity to enact real and substantive change to an organization clearly in need of such is not missed.

Thank you very much for your time and consideration on this most urgent matter.

Sincerely,

C. Blake Powers, CEO

That’s our position, sound off on yours in the comments!

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Volunteers for the Gun Show?

If things work out, Mission: VALOR will once again have donated space at the Indy 1500 Gun & Knife show this coming weekend.  Anyone care to help staff that space Friday, Saturday, or Sunday?

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Indianapolis Area: FedEx Hiring Event

FedEx Express is having a special hiring session this Saturday, 21 February, from 0900-1500 hours at the employment center located at 6311 Airway Drive.  They are looking to hire handlers, but keep in mind that they promote from within.  They also provide benefits including (but not limited to) 401k, tuition reimbursement, and pension.

Requirements are:  2 forms of unexpired ID, a valid driver’s license with at least three years of good driving history, and you must be 18.   Mission: VALOR will add the suggestion that you have not only your employment history for the last 10 years, but your addresses for at least that long as well (longer is better).

If you are not able to attend, you can apply online.

 

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Raffle At Indy 1500 Gun & Knife Show

Thanks to the generosity and support of the Indy 1500 Gun & Knife Show, we have a space there.

Thanks to the generosity and support of MFG Wealth Management and the Indy Trading Post, we are holding a raffle where the winner can choose between a Dickinson 12 gauge 3″ shotgun or a Mossberg .22 rifle.

Jan15GunsTickets are just a dollar each; or, we offer additional tickets for larger donations.  Please visit the Indy Trading Post while you are at the show, and be sure to check out MFG Wealth Management’s website for your financial planning needs.

The show runs through Sunday, and our drawing will be Sunday afternoon.  You do not have to be present to win, so long as you fill out the tickets legibly.

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Indy 1500 Gun & Knife Show

For those near Indianapolis, we will be at the Indy 1500 Gun & Knife Show this weekend.  Come on out, and stay tuned:  we are on track to be raffling something interesting…

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Sims-Lohman Wants You!

Sims-Lohman has immediate openings in their Zionville, IN location and would like to hire veterans for them.  Here’s the information:

1.       Template Technician

a.       Experienced technician earns $18+/hour; candidate with skills that can be trained earns $15/hr.

b.      Previous experience creating templates for counter-tops, cabinets and/or carpentry; or – finish trim carpenter experience

c.       Knowledge of measuring tools, levels

d.      Ability to perform simple math functions, including use of fractions

e.      Valid driver’s license

f.        Ability to pass pre-employment drug screen and physical

g.       Ability to pass background checks (no felonies or serious misdemeanors)

2.       Install Helpers

a.       Earn $12.00 performing general labor and learn how to install countertops, driving our box trucks out to installation sites (homes, offices, apartments, restaurants)

b.      Work with 50+ pounds, utilizing buddy lifts

c.       Ability to work with hand tools (saws, grinders, polishers)

d.      Ability to perform simple math functions, including fractions

e.      Valid driver’s license

f.        Ability to pass pre-employment drug screen and physical

g.       Ability to pass background checks (no felonies or serious misdemeanors)

3.       Polishers

a.       Earn $12.00 polishing cut granite slabs – edges, faucet/sink holes, using hand water grinders

b.      Experience in auto body work, such as buffing, a plus

c.       Ability to lift 50+ pounds

d.      Ability to pass pre-employment drug screen

 

They do have other locations that need help as well, see their website for more details.  To apply for these positions, click here to e-mail your resume directly to HR.

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December Donation Incentives!

No time left for shipping, but if you are in the Indianapolis area we will work with you on pick-up.  

It’s the end of the year and tax time approaches.  Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday are gone, but Mission: VALOR is not done.  We are going to be offering various incentives for your donations, and will be updating this post with new things on a regular basis.

Starting things off is National Advisory Board member Nick Searcy, who has provided a limited number of signed photos.  Some are like these, some have just his signature.  You can have one of these photos for a donation of $50.

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Author Tom Kratman has provided an autographed hardcover copy of The Amazon Legion, and it is yours for a donation of $50.

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Our CEO is throwing the apron he was given while visiting Carlo’s Bakery to the mix, again it is yours for a donation of $50.

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We also have a “Murph The Protector” prize package that includes a signed/numbered copy of the DVD, a signed hardcover book, t-shirt, and some other small things, also for a donation of $50.

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Brooklyn Brewery has donated a prize package as well, and it is yours for a donation of $50.

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Michael Z. Williamson has agreed to sign these hardcover copies of his books that were donated to Mission: VALOR.  A $50 donation gets you one of them on a first come, first served basis; or, you can get all three for a $125 donation.

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Here is a B.N. Shape clothing prize package, yours for a donation of $25.

BNS

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Adam Baldwin Joins National Advisory Board for Mission: VALOR

AB-LS

Mission: VALOR is pleased to announce that actor Adam Baldwin has joined their National Advisory Board. While he will be assisting on a variety of fronts, his focus will be on assisting the development of Operation Audie/Task Force DeForest.

Mr. Baldwin began his career in 1980, and came to prominence for his role in Full Metal Jacket. Since then, he has worked in more than 100 film and television projects, and is best known for his performances in Firefly, Independence Day, Chuck, and his current series, The Last Ship.

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