The Problem with War

How to help burn pit victims and other veterans


Now that the PACT Act has been passed, it’s all about making sure it is implemented in a way that ensures veterans can access their care and benefits in a simple and timely manner.

1) Help eligible veterans

The process for getting veterans who served near burn pits their benefits is now a lot more streamlined. However, it still involves navigating some government bureaucracy. So if there’s anyone in your life who is eligible for benefits under the PACT Act, tell them what you’ve learned and offer to help them get the process going.

Burn Pits 360 and other Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs) will also be closely watching how the VA implements these reforms and making sure they’re giving veterans what they’ve been promised. So keep your eyes on their calls to action and reach out to your representatives when you’re needed.

2) Other issues facing vets

Burn pit exposure is far from the only issue our vets are confronting. They struggle with unemployment and homelessness. They’re also at higher risk for substance abuse, mental health conditions, and suicide. (If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, reach out to the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.)

There are many organizations out there helping veterans navigate their lives and health after service. Many of them have volunteer opportunities, if you have time you can donate — that might mean making phone calls or helping vets to fill out paperwork, but every organization has different needs. So if you’ve got special skills (anything from house painting to fundraising), offer them up. You can find local groups by searching in your area or connect with a VSO that’s helping vets on a national level:

The American Legion

Veterans of Foreign Wars

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America