Veteran services

Wash. Co. Veteran Services discusses the PACT Act

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – Washington County Veterans Services is holding a series of town hall meetings to address the recently passed PACT Act. Ben Dykes is the Director of Veterans Services for Washington County. He said there was a lot of misinformation and confusion being spread.

Some veterans may not know they are eligible for a claim, so it is important to share this information.

“It’s very common for a veteran to know of another veteran who may be living in Madison County or Fort Smith who hasn’t received or seen this information,” Dykes said.

Some of the most notable parts of the PACT act impact those exposed to fire pits and Vietnam veterans impacted by Agent Orange.

“It’s going to open up that treatment or that opportunity for those veterans to be recognized with those illnesses,” Dykes said.

Some of those benefits won’t kick in until years later, but even so, Dykes said you can still file a claim. In fact, the sooner you drop it, the better.

“Every time it opens, it’s already there. It’s already in place,” Dykes said.

Dykes said the VA is behind in processing claims and veterans who file may have to wait a long time. In order to file a claim under the PACT Act, you will need a DD214, evidence, and a doctor’s diagnosis.

Washington County Veterans Services is hosting two more town halls on Aug. 19 and 26 at 11 a.m. They will be held at the Washington County Veterans Services Building.

You can read more about the PACT Act here.