What is a Protected Veteran & What Does the Status Mean?

What is a protected veteran? Let’s look at the Protected Veteran Law and what it means for a disabled veteran in Colorado Springs. We will answer what protected veteran status means and determine if you qualify as a protected veteran. Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center seeks to help all military veterans and their families understand what protected veteran status means and the benefits. The Protected veteran is a status created with an amendment to the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA). This status prohibits discrimination against anyone that identifies as a protected veteran. These veterans receive Affirmative Action-type safeguards from some employers that hire vets. The playing field is leveled for disabled vets and others covered by the law with these requirements.

Which Military Veterans are Considered to have Protected Veteran Status?

You might be saying to yourself, “I am not a protected veteran.”  However, you might be eligible. Protected veteran benefits are available for:

  • Protected Veterans
  • Veterans who earned an Armed Forces Service Medal “pursuant to Executive Order 12985.”
  • Those who served on active duty in the US Military during an expedition, campaign, or war on the ground, naval, or air service
  • Recently separated veterans (3 years following separation from service)

All discharges besides dishonorable may receive protected veteran status.

What Law Governs the Protected Veteran Status?

Under VEVRAA, any employer that does business with the federal government must hire, recruit, and provide mobility for any veteran with the protected veteran status. This law requires all contractors and subcontractors that do business with the government to comply.

What are the Benefits of the Protected Veteran Status?

Aside from providing you with a job, there are other benefits that the protected veteran in Southern Colorado receives. Most importantly, VEVRAA determines that all protected veterans must receive any reasonable accommodation in the workplace to deal with military-related issues or disabilities. The Department of Labor defines these reasonable accommodations as an “adjustment or change made to the workplace, or the usual way of performing a job that allows a disabled veteran to perform the job’s duties or enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment.”

While reasonable accommodation won’t change any job function, there are ways to make the work easier for the veteran. These adjustments might include:

  • Modifications to the work schedule
  • Special print formats for any visually-impaired employee
  • Interpretation of sign language or accessible work materials
  • Adding accessibility features to the common meeting area
  • Adaptive work areas to create more accessibility

Does Being a Protected Veteran Help?

As a protected veteran, you receive benefits that help you get your life back. In your civilian life, you want to get back to work, and this status keeps you from being discriminated against and provides accommodations you need to complete your job.

Military Veteran Services Centers in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Fountain, and Trinidad

Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center strives to aid local military veterans in Southern Colorado with many veteran services that allow a complete transition to and during civilian life. If you are a military veteran or you know someone that is, we are ready to help. We work with protected military veterans, disabled military veterans, and recently separated veterans in Colorado, including Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Trinidad, and Fountain. Our team can help with health and wellness, transition support, employment assistance, legal aid, community aid, and more.

Contact us for more information on how we can help today.

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