Here’s the issue and if you’re anything like me, prepare to have your blood boil. As active law enforcement officers (LEO) and retired LEOs, we share a bond with our brothers and sisters from the military. Just yesterday I met with a group called the Veterans of Weston. They are expanding their reach and may soon become the Veterans of West Broward. During our discussion, they explained to me that the children of low-income disabled veterans were being denied school lunch benefits. They said the denial was a “clerical error”.
After further discussion, it was explained to me that the USDA is supposedly using a non-taxable disability income that disabled veterans receive in order to disqualify their children from receiving free lunch at school. This Federal Disability income should not be counted towards their income for the purpose of qualifying for this program and here’s why.
“Income” should not include any income or benefits received under any Federal programs that are excluded from consideration as income by any statutory prohibition. Furthermore, the value of meals or milk to children shall not be considered as income. To their households for other benefit programs in accordance with the prohibitions in section 12(e) of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act and section 11(b) of the Child Nutrition Act of 1966, 42 U.S.C. 1760(e) and 1780(b). Disability benefits received from the VA should not be included in a disabled vets gross income when being considered for this subsidy. For more info refer to IRS Publication 525.
So how can this be fixed? I see two avenues of corrective action. First, I think we must get the word out about what’s happening. I’ve reached out to my friend George “Tyrus” Murdoch from the Greg Gutfield show and asked him to help shine a spotlight on an issue that we must address now. He knows what it’s like to have a tough childhood and can champion this cause in the media. I have also reached out to my friends on The Hill. I will be speaking to Representative Matt Gaetz because I know he has a passion for helping our veterans. I have also spoken to my friend Billy Long in Missouri. He was eager to help and I am confident he will. Rodney Davis, a Representative from Illinois will also be interested in getting this resolved, as will his colleague from Mississippi, Trent Kelly. Marco Rubio in the Senate is also going to work to resolve this. What I am getting at here is that our veterans are a national treasure, a group of people we must support and issues like this must be shared far and wide and addressed by many so it’s clear we cannot allow things like this to occur.
How can you help? I’m glad you asked. Please reach out to other members of the media and sharing this article on your social media near and far. Reach out to your Congressional Representatives in the U.S. House and in your State House.
We need to see this discussed on the news and fixed by those in power to do so. Together we can fix this problem and get the kids of disabled vets the food and milk they are entitled to and deserve. No kid, especially the kid of a disabled vet, should ever go hungry. The limited disability benefits our veterans receive should not be used against them and prevent their kids from being given school lunch.
This is America and not a single person should have to struggle to feed themself or their family.