Editor's note: Video contains graphic footage that some will find disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised.
In the military, a Charlie Foxtrot is a disaster. A Charlie Foxtrot is exactly what thousands of our service members are facing. We confirmed that 300,000 troops were booted from the military with less than honorable discharges. What they did to get kicked out is often linked to medical conditions like Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic brain injury (TBI). They are stripped of their benefits, when what they really need is help.
The reality is more than bullets and bomb blasts. For our service members, the fight transcends the battlefield. It continues when they come home. It’s replayed and relived, consciously and subconsciously, in real time. After reviewing Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense studies, we found an estimated 420,000 post-9/11 service members experience PTSD, TBI or both.
Our service men and women protect us from the horrors of war. But what happens when the system set up to fight for them, fails?
This is their story. The story of Charlie Foxtrot.
Watch part 1 (of 5) above.
HELP | Veterans Resource Guide
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According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, 20 U.S. veterans die by suicide every day. About 70 percent of veterans who took their own lives were not regular users of VA services. Veterans with less-than-honorable discharges are the most vulnerable group. These less-than-honorable discharges are often issued to service members for minor misconduct, that experts say, can be behavior linked to PTSD, TBI or other trauma-related injuries.
Now is the time for Fairness for Veterans. Let's give them hope to help heal the invisible wounds of war. Please support this common sense, bi-partisan bill to require the military discharge review boards to consider mental health diagnoses like PTSD and TBI.
I am asking the congressional delegation from my state to commit to changing the discharge review board policy by passing the Fairness for Veterans Act.