Dutch war veterans are homeless

This video from the USA says about itself:

Homeless Veteran Dying of Cancer on the Streets of Denver

Yes, Marvin has been drinking. If you were homeless on the streets of Denver dying of cancer, you’d be drinking too to cope with the trauma of reality. In the middle of this interview, Marvin lifted his shirt to show me his back where he had three skin grafts. I didn’t pan the camera down because it just didn’t feel right to do so but what I saw was disturbing. Marvin has a giant hole in his back, unlike anything I have ever seen.

Marvin is a kind man. I stopped to talk to him every time I saw Marvin out panhandling. This evening, he told me he has cancer. We started to talk more. Marvin has many health issues! He needs to be in housing but sadly, there is little housing available for those who need it most!

Marvin spent eight years in the military. He says he now receives $230 a month in disability. No one can afford to live, much less rent an apartment, on that amount of money!

Marvin is vulnerable and fragile. He is an easy target for people who steal from elderly homeless people. The night before, Marvin had everything he owned ripped off. I helped him get some things including a duffle bag to carry his belongings, but Marvin needs housing!

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

Dozens of Dutch veterans with psychological complaints roam the streets or sleep at the homeless shelter, the Volkskrant daily reports. The former soldiers suffered permanent psychological damage during their foreign missions, for which they receive no adequate care, according to conversations with veterans, care providers and the Salvation Army.

Based on an inventory among employees, the Salvation Army says that it concerns dozens of veterans who make use of the shelter. But there is a suspicion that their actual number is “in the hundreds”, says a member of the management in the newspaper.

In many cases, they are former soldiers with PTSD syndrome (post-traumatic stress syndrome), who also encountered other problems after their return to the Netherlands …

The Ministry of Defense has set up the Veterans Counter for veterans with health problems. There the former soldiers are assisted in choosing the right care, but also in applying for provisions and benefits. “But the serious cases are not reached there”, says a lawyer who assists veterans with PTSD, in the Volkskrant. Only the self-reliant people turn to the defense department, the others are put off by the bureaucracy or want to be left alone, he adds.

A study involving military veterans with PTSD and cirrhosis of the liver points to an abnormal mix of bacteria in the intestines as a possible driver of poor cognitive performance — and as a potential target for therapy. The study appeared Aug. 28, 2019, in the American Journal of Physiology: here.

6 thoughts on “Dutch war veterans are homeless

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