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This Lawmaker Wants To Ban Smoking At VA Facilities
A House lawmaker introduced legislation Wednesday to eliminate smoking areas inside and outside all Department of Veterans Affairs facilities.
The VA maintains nearly 1,000 outdoor and 15 indoor smoking areas at VA health care facilities. The Veterans Health Care Act of 1992 requires the VA to offer smoking areas, though designated smoking areas at other federal facilities were closed in 2009. Supporters of the 1992 law said that any restrictions on smoking would violate veterans’ right to have access to a legal product.
Secondhand smoke from the areas unnecessarily puts veterans at risk, said Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, chairman of the subcommittee on health for the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee. His proposed legislation would require the VA to close the smoking areas within the next five years.
Wenstrup argued it’s already policy at most private health care systems to completely ban smoking.
“As a doctor and veteran myself, ensuring that those who I have served alongside receive the best possible care is personal to me,” Wenstrup said in a prepared statement. “The least we can do for those who fought for us is ensure they receive the same considerations and treatments at the VA, as they would in the private sector.”
Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., a physician and chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, said he supported the bill.
“The health and well-being of our nation’s veterans should always come first,” Roe said in a statement.
©2017 the Stars and Stripes. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Just before 8 a.m. on a Sunday morning 78 years ago, Lauren Bruner was preparing for church services and a date that would follow with a girl he'd met outside his Navy base.
The 21-year-old sailor was stationed as a fire controlman aboard the U.S. battleship USS Arizona, overseeing the vessel's .50-caliber guns.
Then alarms rang out. A Japanese plane had bombed the ship in a surprise attack.
It took only nine minutes for the Arizona to sink after the first bomb hit. Bruner was struck by gunfire while trying to flee the inferno that consumed the ship, the second-to-last man to escape the explosion that killed 1,177, including his best friend; 335 survived.
More than 70% of Bruner's body was burned. He was hospitalized for weeks.
Now, nearly eight decades after that fateful day, Bruner's ashes will be delivered to the sea that cradled his fallen comrades, stored in an urn inside the battleship's wreckage.
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.
Joshua Kaleb Watson has been identified as one of the victims of a shooting at the Naval Air Station Pensacola, CBS News reported.
The 23-year-old Alabama native and Naval Academy graduate was named to the Academy's prestigious Commandant's and Dean's lists, and also competed on the rifle team, Alabama's WTVY reported.
NAS Pensacola shooter railed against the US and quoted Osama bin Laden online hours before the attack
PENSACOLA, Fla. (Reuters) - The Saudi airman accused of killing three people at a U.S. Navy base in Florida appeared to have posted criticism of U.S. wars and quoted slain al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden on social media hours before the shooting spree, according to a group that monitors online extremism.
Federal investigators have not disclosed any motive behind the attack, which unfolded at dawn on Friday when the Saudi national is said to have began firing a handgun inside a classroom at the Naval Air Station Pensacola.
NAS Pensacola shooter reportedly hosted a 'dinner party' to watch mass shooting videos the week before the attack
The Saudi military officer who shot and killed 3 people at Naval Air Station Pensacola on Friday reportedly hosted a "dinner party" the week before the attack "to watch videos of mass shootings," the Associated Press reports, citing an unnamed U.S. official.
The Minnesota National Guard has released the names of the three soldiers killed in Thursday's helicopter crash.