GI Rights Hotline

Military Discharges and Military Counseling

Call 1-877-447-4487

News Archive

More Recent Discharge Upgrade News

On 28 AUG 17 the DOD issued significant new guidance on the meaning of “liberal consideration” in discharge upgrade cases involving PTSD, TBI, other mental health conditions, as well as guidance for applications involving sexual assault and sexual harassment.  Some experts who work in the field are calling this guidance a game changer in favor or wider recognition of the injuries veterans have suffered.

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USING YOUR CONGRESSIONAL OFFICE TO RESOLVE GRIEVANCES

In our democracy, it may seem like the US military and the US Congress have very little to do with each other.  But when it comes to resolving troublesome situations with your command, a little Congressional oversight can sometimes go a long way.  It may not seem like your Congressional representatives have the power to govern the military, but ultimately Congress can play a significant role in holding the military accountable to its own laws and regulations.  After all, the code that military regulations are based on comes from the laws passed by Congress.  You have the right under federal law to contact your Congressperson for assistance in peronal military matters.  Contacting a Congressperson is protected communication, which means that no one is allowed to punish you or otherwise retaliate against you for contacting Congress for assistance.

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Reservists' right to move beyond commuting distance: How you can protect yourself

Reservists who move beyond a “reasonable” distance from their training units cannot be punished for not attending drills, contrary to what some members hear from their commands. Callers to the GI Rights Hotline report threats of unexcused absences and even attempts by their command to chapter them out of the reserves for unsatisfactory participation. Such measures, while intimidating, are not backed by the regulations and can be successfully challenged.

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Do I Have to Sign This?

Often times people in the military are tricked, coerced, or misinformed into believing that they must sign certain documents such as extensions, reenlistments, job reclassifications, or an agreement to spend a remaining service obligation in an active guard unit.  Most of the time such agreements are voluntary, but because of command pressure, the person signing them thinks they have no choice. The command creates the impression that the person must sign and then, after the fact, tells the person that they voluntarily agreed.  However, if the command has the authority to require the military member to take an action, they can just cut an order.  Being asked to sign normally indicates that the action is voluntary. 

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