NOD Career Specialist Testifies at Senate Veterans Affairs Committee Hearing on Employment Needs
WASHINGTON, DC,November 18, 2009 — Helen Tymes, a Career Specialist for the National Organization on Disability’s (NOD) Army Wounded Warrior Career program testified today before the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee’s hearing on “Easing the Burden Through Employment,” urging the Senators to expand programs to address the employment needs of wounded veterans, especially those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI.) The number of veterans in the Army Wounded Warrior program has more than doubled in the last three years, now numbering over 5,000. The largest numbers have PTSD or TBI as a primary diagnosis. The NOD AW2 Careers program provides career services to close to 200 of the most severely injured in a pilot project now operating in North Carolina, Colorado and Texas. Tymes specializes in helping veterans find and enter education, training, and work of some kind-paid, volunteer, full- or part-time. The NOD program has placed half of the almost 200 veterans it serves into education, training, and work in less than a full year of operation. The NOD program operates under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Army's AW2 Program. “We strongly believe that the population of severely injured service members, like the rest of the country’s people with disabilities, faces a very complex recovery process that affects a family over a prolonged period and requires an array of services and supports for it to gain a semblance of a good quality of life,” Tymes said in her testimony.