In the COVID-19 Military Support Initiative virtual town hall on Thursday, experts from Veterans Affairs and veteran support organizations provided an overview of how transitioning/transitioned servicemembers are being supported during the coronavirus crisis. 

The opening speaker was Margarita Devlin who serves as the Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Benefits in the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

Devlin discussed that as different counties and states open-up, the VA has started to put together components of a plan to return to business as usual. “If a provider gets in touch to schedule an appointment say in June, just know they are preparing,” said Devlin. 

“Most importantly the safety of our veterans is our number one concern,” said Devlin. “We are working with our contract vendors to make sure they have really solid plans to how they disinfect and have protocols in place using protective equipment.” 

Devlin also provided an in-depth overview of new VA program called Solid Start, which provides servicemembers a wide array of resources during the transition process. Other resources, including information on education benefits, mental health resources, and financial management assistance was provided in a PowerPoint slide which can be found on the CMSI website 

After Devlin’s opening, CMSI was joined by three members of the veteran support community: John Roberts of Wounded Warriors, Lawrence Montreuil of American Legion, and Ryan Gallucci of Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. 

Watch the full recording the town hall here