Vermont - Dept. Commander2023 - 2024
Department Commander Mark Cloutier November Bulletin
Greetings fellow Legionnaires,
The Fall Conference has come and gone, and I have to say it was a good one. Lots of information was discussed. We also had a visit from National Vice Commander Bill Roy. Next up is the Mid-Winter conference to be held at the Hampton Inn located just off I-89 exit 16. We are currently starting to plan for it and hope to make it very informative.
Recently there have been emails in my name landing in everyone’s inboxes asking for donations of gift cards. The emails are not from me and should be deleted. These are phishing attempts that aim to scam people out of money. If you look closely at the email address that they are being sent from, you can see that it is not coming from me. My email is listed at the end of this article. Unfortunately, there is no way for us to stop them other than reporting them to the Federal Trade Commission ( ReportFraud.ftc.gov ) and it is not guaranteed that they will be able to stop them either. We all just need to be mindful of these emails and not even reply to them. If it allows you to report it as spam or a phishing attempt, please do so.
One thing that we talked about at the Fall Conference is a project that I am starting. This is called veterans and video gaming. I am working on forming a committee for this and hope to have it ratified at the Mid-Winter Conference. There are some Departments that have already started this and held gaming tournaments with great success. The Department of California is heading this up and if we can get 30 departments on board with this and pass resolutions, National HQ will create an E-Gaming Commission. They have partnered with Regiment Gaming, Stack Up, and Operation Comfort Warrior. Online gaming gives veterans with TBIs and PTSD the spirit of fellowship, and support online and growing the space where our veterans and their families can bond over their shared passion for online gaming.
· 64% of households have at least one gaming device.
· 55% of avid gamers say that they play video games to connect with their friends or family.
· 50% of veterans used video games to cope with challenges associated with their military service.
· According to the Department of Veterans Affairs 2021 National Veteran Suicide Prevention report, an average of 17.2 Veterans committed suicide per day in 2019.
· According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, 11-20% of Veterans who served in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, 12% of Gulf War Veterans, and 15% of Vietnam Veterans have PTSD in any given year.
· Mental health conditions are treatable with the VA offering a wide range of effective treatments and services for Veterans with mental health conditions, including a bundled public health approach involving multiple sectors, including the media and entertainment industries.
· Studies conducted by WebMD and reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD, playing video games has numerous benefits for mental health, including mental stimulation, feeling accomplished, mental health recovery, social interaction, and emotional resilience.
· On May 22, 2019, Mike Richman from VA Research Communications reported that studies with a small sample of veterans trying to recover from mental health issues found that video games can help in overcoming such problems as PTSD and substance abuse disorders.
I have a resolution that can be used for this, and I plan to send it out to all Posts to jump on board if they choose to. PCs that Posts purchase to be used for gaming can also be used as a resource center for our veterans. You don’t even need to purchase a PC for this. You can use PlayStation, and Xbox consoles set up with online access and communication headsets.
If you are interested in this, please feel free to reach out to me and I will be glad to answer any questions.
I can be reached by email at email@example.com
Stay safe, Stay Healthy!
For God and Country,
Mark Cloutier, Department Commander