HAUPPAGUE, NY - Suffolk County has one of the largest military veterans population in the country, and the largest in New York State. Suffolk County’s Veterans Service Agency has a wealth of resources that are underutilized. Those resource include: a listing of hundreds of veterans’ discounts from restaurants to retail shops; benefit programs with information on disability compensation, pension, education, vocational rehabilitation, home loan guarantee, and life insurance; and state benefits that offer Vietnam veterans tuition, Persian Gulf veterans tuition and veterans tax exemption.
In addition, the county provides assistance with filing claims for benefits from federal & state agencies, filing DD-214, discharge papers and separation papers, and in home visits to assist the housebound veterans with claims.
“What’s missing in this county is a place where all of those resources can be found and that will be in the upcoming “Suffolk County Veterans Resource Guide,” said Suffolk County Legislator Sarah Anker. “As the daughter of a disabled Navy veteran, I know how important it is to provide assistance to our veterans and their families.”
Some of the county’s services can be found on the County’s website, but many older veterans do not use computers and are unaware of the assistance that the county has to offer.
“I’ve met a number of vets that are in need of assistance and I do my best to help them navigate through the system,” said Legislator Anker. “It’s complicated and frustrating at times, but we have an entire department that has knowledge and guidance to help those who have provided this county with our freedoms. It’s the least we can do for our county’s brave military men and women, and this guide will provide a much needed bridge for those that are in need of our wealth of resources and opportunities.”
Legislator Anker sponsored IR No. 1433-2019 that directs the County’s Veterans Service Agency to produce the guide. The resolution was passed unanimously at the General Legislature meeting on June 4th. The guide will be available in October of this year. For more information about Suffolk County’s Veterans Services call 631-853-VETS (8387).