From the inspiration for starting the organization to the crucial services it provides every day, the story of Dryhootch is one of profound compassion. In 2008, Dryhootch was established by a group of Vietnam veterans in Milwaukee who were concerned that the same problems they faced when returning from war (including addiction, PTSD, homelessness, and adjustment issues) would plague veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Dryhootch coffeehouse is a place for veterans to spend time together and offers vet-to-vet mentoring, information about veteran benefits, family services, legal clinics, and support groups. The organization can connect vets with resources for health services and veterans benefits, including help for those who may not have access to benefits because of their discharge circumstances, including vets who were discharged under Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
I believe we’ve already posted the video before but just confirming that the person that group of people were trying to help is Scott Olsen, an Iraq war veteran, who is now in critical condition with a fractured skull.
And the only defense the cops can muster for their pointless violent crackdown was “well they were tearing up the lawn…”
This video is profoundly disturbing. But it’s also really important to watch. Scott Olsen is a 24 year old veteran from Wisconsin who served two tours of duty in Iraq. He’s now in critical care because of American police.
For the second year in a row, more American soldiers—both enlisted men and women and veterans—committed suicide than were killed in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Also, Milwaukeeans: have you heard of Dryhootch? It is a coffee shop on Brady that was opened by a group of Vietnam veterans who wanted to help soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan (as well as veterans from all eras). In addition to just being a place to hang out, it offers many services for veterans and their families, including support groups, a legal clinic, and resources related to mental health. I’ve been meaning to post something about it for a while (and sadly, this picture is what reminded me to do so). They are particularly focused on helping veterans who are not eligible for military benefits because of the circumstances of their discharges (including those discharged under DADT). Spread the word!
Walker's Controversial Appointee to Veterans Affairs Board
Earlier this year, while most of the state was focused on his union-busting efforts, Scott Walker quietly took control of the power to directly appoint the head of the Veterans Affairs Board.
With this new authority, Walker appointed John Scocos, a man who had already been fired from this position in 2009. Scocos is also currently suing the board members and the agency, seeking $500,000 in damages.
As a result of this controversial appointment, Peter Moran, the Vice Chairman of the Board and a retired U.S. Army Reserve colonel, resigned today.