The VA Just Dropped More Details About The New Veteran ID Cards

news
Army photo by Cpl. Alex Flynn

The Department of Veterans Affairs has been playing coy since it first announced that new veterans identification cards — wallet-sized IDs that allow people to prove their military service without a copy of their DD214 — will become available to former service members beginning in November, revealing details about the application process in piecemeal. Now the department has graced us with a little more information.  


Military.com, which first broke the news of the new veteran IDs earlier this month, now reports that vets who want one of the new cards must first register online with Vets.gov, a website that authenticates users through the ID.me system. Officials originally told Military.com that veterans would be able to apply for the cards online, but provided few specifics; they were no less taciturn with Task & Purpose.

We did confirm, however, that veterans will not be able to use the cards as proof of age when shopping for adult commodities like cigarettes and beer, because they are not official government-issued IDs — which, as a Military.com notes, also means they can’t be used for things like air travel.

Unfortunately, we still don’t know what the cards will look like.

The 2015 Veterans Identification Card Act directed the VA to issue a hard-copy photo ID to any veteran who applies for one (though there are some gray areas, detailed below). The legislation was introduced after politicians realized that people were having trouble proving that they had served in the military when attempting to secure sweet veteran discounts and benefits, like a free meal at Applebee’s on Veterans Day.    

“Goods, services and promotional activities are often offered by public and private institutions to veterans who demonstrate proof of service in the military, but it is impractical for a veteran to always carry Department of Defense form DD-214 discharge papers to demonstrate such proof,” the law states.

Currently, only veterans who are enrolled in the VA healthcare system or receive retirement pay have photo ID cards. A handful of states also allow people to identify themselves as veterans on their driver’s licenses.

The law does not stipulate that only honorably discharged veterans are eligible for the card. However, Military.com reports that an honorable discharge is required. Task & Purpose is waiting for verification on this crucial bit of information from the VA, and will update this article accordingly.  

According to Military.com, to complete the application process, veterans must upload a copy of a valid government photo ID — like a driver’s license or a passport — and providing other information, such as a Social Security number. The VA has yet to announce the specific website address where vets can apply.  

The VA will mail the cards directly to the veteran, but officials told  Military.com that the department has yet to finalize a “timeline for how long it will take to receive a card.” We also don’t know when in November the VA will start accepting applications. Stay tuned.

Construction crews staged material needed for the Santa Teresa Border Wall Replacement project near the Santa Teresa Port of Entry. (U.S. Customs and Border Patrol/Mani Albrecht)

With a legal fight challenge mounting from state governments over the Trump administration's use of a national emergency to construct at the U.S.-Mexico border, the president has kicked his push for the barrier into high gear.

On Wednesday, President Trump tweeted a time-lapse video of wall construction in New Mexico; the next day, he proclaimed that "THE WALL IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION RIGHT NOW"

But there's a big problem: The footage, which was filmed more than five months ago on Sep. 18, 2018, isn't really new wall construction at all, and certainly not part of the ongoing construction of "the wall" that Trump has been haggling with Congress over.

Read More Show Less
(From left to right) Chris Osman, Chris McKinley, Kent Kroeker, and Talon Burton

A group comprised of former U.S. military veterans and security contractors who were detained in Haiti on weapons charges has been brought back to the United States and arrested upon landing, The Miami-Herald reported.

The men — five Americans, two Serbs, and one Haitian — were stopped at a Port-au-Prince police checkpoint on Sunday while riding in two vehicles without license plates, according to police. When questioned, the heavily-armed men allegedly told police they were on a "government mission" before being taken into custody.

Read More Show Less
Army Sgt. Jeremy Seals died on Oct. 31, 2018, following a protracted battle with stomach cancer. His widow, Cheryl Seals is mounting a lawsuit alleging that military care providers missed her husband's cancer. Task & Purpose photo illustration by Aaron Provost

The widow of a soldier whose stomach cancer was allegedly overlooked by Army doctors for four years is mounting a medical malpractice lawsuit against the military, but due to a decades-old legal rule known as the Feres Doctrine, her case will likely be dismissed before it ever goes to trial.

Read More Show Less
The first grenade core was accidentally discovered on Nov. 28, 2018, by Virginia Department of Historic Resources staff examining relics recovered from the Betsy, a British ship scuttled during the last major battle of the Revolutionary War. The grenade's iron jacket had dissolved, but its core of black powder remained potent. Within a month or so, more than two dozen were found. (Virginia Department of Historic Resources via The Virginian-Pilot)

In an uh-oh episode of historic proportions, hand grenades from the last major battle of the Revolutionary War recently and repeatedly scrambled bomb squads in Virginia's capital city.

Wait – they had hand grenades in the Revolutionary War? Indeed. Hollow iron balls, filled with black powder, outfitted with a fuse, then lit and thrown.

And more than two dozen have been sitting in cardboard boxes at the Department of Historic Resources, undetected for 30 years.

Read More Show Less

A Coast Guard lieutenant arrested this week planned to "murder innocent civilians on a scale rarely seen in this country," according to a court filing requesting he be detained until his trial.

Read More Show Less