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Old 03-25-2009, 12:09 AM
 
2 posts, read 5,015 times
Reputation: 13

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Hello my name is Brian I am 27, and I am a veteran that served 3 years with US Army w/ Honorable Discharge, and 5 years with the National Guard with Honorable Discharge. Since joining the NG I have been in a financial struggle during and after my discharge. I can barely land a job that pays me what I am worth with nearly 6 years as a supply specialist (92Y) and a year and a half of human resources specialist (42A or 42L) and been only able to work temp jobs from staffing firms which pretty much hurt me only because it wasnt steady employment and doesnt seem to do much for me regarding my resume. I recently lost my job in FEB due to the economy and was laid off from my position. I am in a world of hurt because I can't keep up with my bills, in debt of $3,000, and now have a poor credit score because of constantly being late or unable to make payments. In about Sep 07 I was in the process of loosing my car, and during the middle of the night I thought my car was being stolen at the time and confronted a tow truck driver whom I didnt know was a tow truck driver because he was driving an unmarked vehicle, no type of uniform, was in civilian clothes, and did not show me any type of paperwork. As soon as I come outside to see what is going on, a man twice my size threatens me with physical violence telling me "step back or I will knock you the **** out" so being a soldier my natural instinct is to defend myself brought out my bat and told him "go for it" he called the cops I got arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, which got pleaded down to a misdeamenor battery, because I had no priors and was with the Guard at the time. Anyway long story short it was hard enough as is being in the military for 8years only being offered minimum wage jobs, or working temp jobs for a little higher pay to keep myself from being homeless. Now that I have this misdeamenor charge on my record, I have noticed that I get no kind of responses after filing in applications. I really need serious help and was wondering if anyone can offer some advice. I am trying to take college courses online to improve my income, never learned about the job market and how hard it would be, I had to learn for myself on creating a resume, job interview skills and such. I was hoping for some finanicial assistance but dont know where to turn to, I went to my local vet center loooking for help, but they are only open for a short period, understaffed, and overworked. I dont know where to turn to, and need dental help, financial help, and legal help, so that I can put my life back together. I thought after serving my country for 8 years honorably I would have a great future ahead of me, and instead my future looks pretty grim, almost next to nothing. Please can anyone help or relate?
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Old 03-25-2009, 12:55 AM
 
Location: Bayou City
2,991 posts, read 4,468,299 times
Reputation: 2496
It was rough going for me too for a couple of years after getting out.

First thing's first. Register with the VA for your medical. In fact I think for dental benefits you have up to 90 days after discharge to register. I'm not sure what state you're in but you will need to register with the closest VA system that serves your community. Generally your copays will be very low depending on the priority level you're given. And if you are going through financial hardship, you can work with them to get your copays expunged. Go to the VA website to find out more.

Second. See if you might qualify for disability compensation. If you suffered any injury or had a pre-existing condition exacerbated while on active service, you may be entitled to a service-connected disability rating. I was approved for my high blood pressure and depression within six months of applying, got a year's worth of backpay lump sum plus a steady monthly income (which Congress just increased last December) - not to mention free health care with the VA as a disabled vet.

Third. There's a wonderful program called US Vets that provides subsidized housing and professional development programs for vets. They have limited locations though. Been in the program myself for a year and am now fully independent with a decent place for real cheap. They have counselors, career specialists, legal representatives, education/training programs, and a whole host of other valuable resources to help you get back on your feet.

Fourth. Did you sign up for the GI Bill? If so, get with VA Education and apply for Chapter 30 benefits to cover your schooling. With an Honorable, you are sure to get it. As a vet with a disability rating, I'm entitled to vocational rehabilitation benefits, which not only covers all my tuition expenses and books, but affords me a monthly living allowance as well.

Fifth. Apply for a VA home loan guarantee. Even though I don't plan on purchasing a home right now at least I have the paperwork confirming my eligibility for a guaranteed low rate and subsidized down payment. Real easy to get one.

Sixth. Register your discharge with your state and county clerk if you can. Contact your state and find out about all the veteran service organizations available to you. Most states usually have more than one, at every level. Some VSO's might even offer legal representation to help you through your legal challenges.

Good luck.

Last edited by MrSykes; 03-25-2009 at 01:03 AM..
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Old 03-25-2009, 04:38 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, Louisiana
14,095 posts, read 22,963,452 times
Reputation: 7957
When I got out I got lucky in that the VA facility I went to had a program that helped to convert your military experience to civilian jobs since many civilians don't understand military jobs or what they involve. They also helped me with my resume. I didn't know at the time that working in the engine/fire room of a ship was the same type of job as a stationary plant operator which is what I do now at a hospital. I went through several jobs right after getting out the military. Problem was getting adjusted to civilian job world after 8 years in the Navy. There were times I had to swallow my E-5 pride and take a fastfood or discount department store job working under someone who was either in high school or had just recently graduated high school. Within a month or two I was able to get a job that paid more than double those managers' pay. When in a job interview, try to sit up straight but relaxed. My brother-in-law was in the Army National Guard and said he came across bosses who didn't want to hire ANG either because of their feelings towards the military or the potential loss of an employee (one weekend a month and a few weeks a year unless called to active duty) for service duty.
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Old 03-25-2009, 06:16 PM
 
3,651 posts, read 8,111,745 times
Reputation: 2747
Sorry to hear about the rough times. Some good suggestions above. My first thought was consider going back in (and PS it doesn't necessarily have to be in supply or even in the Army, check the other services and weigh your options). As even a junior NCO, pay isn't bad, and you cannot beat those benefits.
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Old 03-25-2009, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia PA
260 posts, read 808,278 times
Reputation: 120
My husband got out last October, and we are going through similar things. He is now battling depression and has not been able to get a job. Things are rough out there, but keep in mind that you can do whatever you set your mind to.You survived 8 yrs. in the military, sometimes, it can't get no tougher than that. We about to go bankrupt, move to a new place (cheaper rent, cheaper cost of living) and I think we will be ok. Believe it or not, going bankrupt is not as bad as it seems, if you can't make ends meet. I know people probably gonna yell at me for suggesting that, but a fresh start can sometimes give you a new perspective in life and as to what you can do.I also think that this coming August, if you are enrolled in college and are taking classes, that you might be able to qualify for BAH benefits. I think that is what my husband said he was gonna weight for. So they will help you pay for school and help with your rent while you in school to.
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Old 03-25-2009, 09:34 PM
 
1,476 posts, read 4,034,292 times
Reputation: 957
Sorry to hear about your hard times. I agree with others who suggest maybe you should just try to go back into the Army.
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Old 03-26-2009, 06:31 AM
 
Location: in love with life!
5,289 posts, read 1,103,730 times
Reputation: 844
I'm praying for you and your situation, every time I talk with some of my friends that have been honorably discharged I hear about similar situations and it just makes me mad for how our country is treating people that have served us.

I agree that the best place for you to go would be the nearest VA.

Military & Veteran Career Center -- Connecting veterans with civilian jobs

The link is sponsored by military.com and has some good resources for Vets.

I would also say put your resume on sites like Monster.com or Careerbuilder.com and it pretty easy and you never what will turn it up.

Of course like others have said you could always return to the military.

My prayers go out to ya.
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Old 03-26-2009, 08:14 AM
 
756 posts, read 1,945,018 times
Reputation: 621
Quote:
Originally Posted by sungyoon82 View Post
Hello my name is Brian I am 27, and I am a veteran that served 3 years with US Army w/ Honorable Discharge, and 5 years with the National Guard with Honorable Discharge. Since joining the NG I have been in a financial struggle during and after my discharge. I can barely land a job that pays me what I am worth with nearly 6 years as a supply specialist (92Y) and a year and a half of human resources specialist (42A or 42L) and been only able to work temp jobs from staffing firms which pretty much hurt me only because it wasnt steady employment and doesnt seem to do much for me regarding my resume. I recently lost my job in FEB due to the economy and was laid off from my position. I am in a world of hurt because I can't keep up with my bills, in debt of $3,000, and now have a poor credit score because of constantly being late or unable to make payments. In about Sep 07 I was in the process of loosing my car, and during the middle of the night I thought my car was being stolen at the time and confronted a tow truck driver whom I didnt know was a tow truck driver because he was driving an unmarked vehicle, no type of uniform, was in civilian clothes, and did not show me any type of paperwork. As soon as I come outside to see what is going on, a man twice my size threatens me with physical violence telling me "step back or I will knock you the **** out" so being a soldier my natural instinct is to defend myself brought out my bat and told him "go for it" he called the cops I got arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, which got pleaded down to a misdeamenor battery, because I had no priors and was with the Guard at the time. Anyway long story short it was hard enough as is being in the military for 8years only being offered minimum wage jobs, or working temp jobs for a little higher pay to keep myself from being homeless. Now that I have this misdeamenor charge on my record, I have noticed that I get no kind of responses after filing in applications. I really need serious help and was wondering if anyone can offer some advice. I am trying to take college courses online to improve my income, never learned about the job market and how hard it would be, I had to learn for myself on creating a resume, job interview skills and such. I was hoping for some finanicial assistance but dont know where to turn to, I went to my local vet center loooking for help, but they are only open for a short period, understaffed, and overworked. I dont know where to turn to, and need dental help, financial help, and legal help, so that I can put my life back together. I thought after serving my country for 8 years honorably I would have a great future ahead of me, and instead my future looks pretty grim, almost next to nothing. Please can anyone help or relate?
Thank you for your service!

I don't mean to sound harsh but this is what I got from your post: I went in, got out, went back in, got into financial debt, got out, got arrested and now, I want a bailout. All branches of the military have services for transitioning out. They offer resume workshops, financial planning, job hunting and interviewing seminars. In the Marine Corps, these classes are mandatory.

There is an economic crisis currently. Everyone is having a hard time. Jobs are very competitive. Having trouble with the law has made you less competitive.

Get a full time job, save your money, pay off your debt and take classes in the PM. It works for most people.

I am not sure what your specific benefits would be. They are different from someone who "retired" after 20. The VA should point you in the right direction.

In the meantime, take a full time job, even if it means flipping burgers. I am sorry for your struggles but sadly, there are many, many people in the same boat. You need to take responsibility for yourself - it isn't easy and it may be a long road! You can do it!
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Old 03-26-2009, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Fayetteville, NC
1,490 posts, read 5,047,855 times
Reputation: 1598
Go back in the Army. They are giving lots of folks criminal waivers. Your credit problem will be an issue with a security clearance.
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Old 03-26-2009, 11:54 AM
 
Location: Bayou City
2,991 posts, read 4,468,299 times
Reputation: 2496
Quote:
Originally Posted by sungyoon82 View Post
I recently lost my job in FEB due to the economy and was laid off from my position. I am in a world of hurt because I can't keep up with my bills, in debt of $3,000, and now have a poor credit score because of constantly being late or unable to make payments.
Try applying for unemployment in your state if you haven't already. Got on it myself right after discharge. Helped me keep up with the bills for a good 6 months until I was able to find something permanent.
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