Morale: Relief for the Shortchanged Wounded


December 31, 2007:
As is customary in
wartime, new laws are passed to confer more benefits on troops serving in
combat, or recovering from battle injuries. An example of this is Combat Injury
Pay (CIP), which the U.S. Congress authorized in 2006. This provides extra pay
of up to $430 a month, for three months after one is wounded in combat and
still hospitalized. Keeping track of the days hospitalized (some wounded vets
were in and out of the hospital) created the kind of bureaucratic swamp that
Department of Defense clerks got lost in. The U.S. Department of Defense is the
largest organization on the planet, and produces its share of bureaucratic
nightmares. CIP turned out to be one of them for the troops. After over a year
of trying to work out all the bugs in the system, the Department of Defense
believes that it has it all sorted out and will begin issuing make-up payments
to nearly a thousand wounded veterans who were shortchanged. While finally
getting the money is appreciated, many of the vets are still a bit traumatized
over all the hassles they had to endure while sorting it all out.


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