05-24-2018  7:09 am      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

Mississippi Avenue Giving Tuesday

On Tuesday, May 22, 10 percent of proceeds from participating Mississippi Ave. businesses will go to SEI ...

Raina Croff to Speak at Architectural Heritage Center

'When the Landmarks are Gone: Older African Americans, Place, and Change in N/NE Portland’ describes SHARP Walking Program ...

Portland Playhouse Presents August Wilson’s ‘Fences’ Through June 10

May 20 performance will include discussion on mental health; June 10 performance will be followed by discussion of fatherhood ...

Peggy Houston-Shivers Presents Benefit Concert for Allen Temple CME

Concert to take place May 20 at Maranatha Church ...

Man gets 13 years for crashing motorhome into patrol cars

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A Salem man pleaded guilty and was sentenced to more than 13 years in prison for assault against Salem police officers after leading police on a chase through Salem and ramming his motor home into officers in their patrol cars.The Statesman Journal reports 61-year-old Roy...

Woodburn officer gets 150 days in jail for child sex abuse

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A former Woodburn police officer has been sentenced to 150 days in jail and five years of probation for having sex with an underage girl and soliciting sexual contact from the child online.The Statesman Journal reports that 29-year-old Daniel Kerbs was sentenced Wednesday....

Worker who died in fall at Sound Transit site identified

SEATTLE (AP) — Officials have identified the man who died after falling from a light rail column at a Sound Transit construction site in Bellevue.The Seattle Times reports 63-year-old Walter Burrows was a foreman and a longtime employee at Kiewit, the company building the elevated light rail...

Case of Legionnaires' disease suspected at UW Medical Center

SEATTLE (AP) — A case of Legionnaires' disease has been suspected at the University of Washington Medical Center.KOMO-TV reported Wednesday that this is the third time in as many years that the disease has been suspected at the facility.Officials said the patient "has been diagnosed with a...

OPINION

Racism After Graduation May Just Be What's on the Menu

Dr. Julianne Malveaux says that for our young millennials, racism is inevitable ...

Prime Minister Netanyahu Shows Limits of Israel’s Democracy

Bill Fletcher, Jr. on racial politics in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s uneven treatment of African immigrants ...

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Bucks' Brown decries 'police intimidation' during arrest

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Milwaukee police chief has apologized to Sterling Brown and says officers have been disciplined for acting "inappropriately" after the Bucks player was zapped with a stun gun during his arrest for a parking violation in January.Brown, who is African-American, said in a...

George Zimmerman tells court he's [scripts/homepage/home.php].5 million in debt

SANFORD, Fla. (AP) — The ex-neighborhood watch volunteer who killed a black teen in Florida in 2012 says he's [scripts/homepage/home.php].5 million in debt and has no income.George Zimmerman filed paperwork detailing his financial state as he fights a misdemeanor stalking charge.The Orlando Sentinel reports a public...

Senate primary splits Arizona conservatives between 2 icons

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona (AP) — Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio was asking dozens of tea party activists for their backing in Arizona's Republican Senate primary when one audience member said it was a shame disgruntled conservatives couldn't send "both of you" to Washington.The man...

ENTERTAINMENT

In taking on 'Solo,' Ehrenreich faced an unenviable task

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Thandie Newton jokes that there might be something off about Alden Ehrenreich — because how else could he take on the pressure-filled role of Han Solo with so much ease?"Every week, I was expecting a call that Alden had had a nervous breakdown and wouldn't be coming...

Rockwell work at center of controversy gets M at auction

PITTSFIELD, Mass. (AP) — One of the two Norman Rockwell paintings at the center of a Massachusetts museum's contentious decision to sell 40 works of art has been sold at auction for more than million."Blacksmith's Boy — Heel and Toe," also known as "Shaftsbury Blacksmith Shop," was...

Michael Jackson estate slams ABC TV special on his last days

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The estate of Michael Jackson is objecting to an ABC TV special on the end of the King of Pop's life, calling it a crass attempt to exploit Jackson without respect for his legacy or children.The estate said in a statement to The Associated Press on Wednesday that "The Last...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP PHOTOS: Then and now: France's World War I battle-scape

PARIS (AP) — U.S. troops fighting in France in World War I found a landscape ravaged by trench warfare and...

Bucks' Brown decries 'police intimidation' during arrest

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Milwaukee police chief has apologized to Sterling Brown and says officers have been...

Feds: Uber self-driving SUV saw pedestrian but didn't brake

DETROIT (AP) — Federal investigators say the autonomous Uber SUV that struck and killed an Arizona...

More than 350 observers to monitor Turkish elections

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — An international security body says it is deploying 22 long-term and 350 short-term...

North Korea demolishes nuclear site ahead of Trump summit

PUNGGYE-RI, North Korea (AP) — Just weeks ahead of a planned summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, Kim...

Spanish ruling party fined in major corruption case

MADRID (AP) — The conviction of more than two dozen Spanish businesspeople and officials in a major...

F-15 Pilots
Greg Botelho CNN

(CNN) -- A study released Thursday claims that troops who report suffering post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of sexual trauma -- namely for rape, assault or harassment -- are much less likely to get benefits than troops claiming to suffer from PTSD because of other causes.

The report from the Service Women's Action Network and the American Civil Liberties Union looked into what is called military sexual assault trauma. Specifically, how did troops (male or female) who claim to have experienced "sexual violence" fare in getting disability benefits?

Not well for many of them, the advocates claim, calling the "often unsuccessful" effort to get such benefits "an unfair fight."

"They face a broken bureaucracy, with protracted delays and inaccurate adjudications," the report's authors write. "And ... it is clear that veterans who survive in-service sexual trauma also face discrimination in seeking compensation."

They point to data, obtained following lawsuits from the Department of Veterans Affairs, that show a persistent gap in the success rate of those troops seeking benefits for PTSD tied to sexual trauma compared to those who say they got PTSD for other reasons.

The Department of Veterans Affairs responded in a statement, saying it is "committed to ensuring that veterans have access to military sexual trauma-related health care and disability benefits."

The ACLU/SWAN report goes through the 2012 fiscal year and does not include FY 2013, which ended September 30. Data for the more recent fiscal year, the VA points out, shows a 6-percentage point gap in benefits grant rates for those with sexual trauma PTSD claims and all PTSD claims

Even without this data, those claiming PTSD due to sexual trauma have had increasing success in getting benefits. The claims of 56.8% of them went through in fiscal year 2012, much higher than the 30% success rate in fiscal year 2008.

The report's authors point out approval rates for PTSD claims not related to sexual traumas went up as well: For FY2012, those were at 73.3%, up 20% from a few years earlier.

"The gap is really striking," said Anu Bhagwati, executive director of SWAN. "...The gap got even larger in 2011 and was large, as well, in 2012."

The VA, however, highlighted training and other efforts that have led to the significant increase in the number of troops claiming sexual trauma who have received disability benefits.

"The Under Secretary for Benefits (Allison Hickey) has spearheaded VA's efforts to ensure that these claims are adjudicated compassionately and fairly, with sensitivity to the unique circumstances presented by each individual claim," the department said. "... Hickey's efforts have dramatically improved VA's overall sensitivity."

Notably, claims tied to military sexual trauma represent a fraction of the PTSD claims overall that Veterans Affairs sees. Over the 2008 through 2012 fiscal years, for instance, there were 15,862 such claims out of 591,456 overall.

The report highlights significant differences among Veterans Affairs regional offices in benefit grants for sexual trauma. Co-author Kathryn Mammel, from the Veterans Legal Services Clinic at Yale, said that the variation between VA offices for all PTSD claims "is not nearly as widespread" as that for those specifically tabbed to sexual trauma.

The office with the lowest approval rate for sexual trauma claims in FY 2012 is in St. Paul, Minnesota, signing off on just 25.8% of requests. Offices in Detroit and St. Louis had similarly low rates, while offices in Nashville, Los Angeles and elsewhere showed significant upticks in recent years.

™ & © 2013 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

 

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