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January 9, 2014

Temporary Change to Hours and Access For Select Southern Illinois Veterans’ Service Offices

SPRINGFIELD – Over the coming weeks Veterans and family members in and around Southern Illinois may experience challenges in meeting in person with a Veteran Service Officer (VSO) due to a medical absence. 

The Veteran Service Officer (VSO) for the Saline County office in Harrisburg will be unavailable duty for due to medical absence. This VSO’s area of responsibility includes the office in Harrisburg, with iterant offices in Carmi and Metropolis, Illinois, on a rotating basis.  During the VSO’s absence, other southern region IDVA VSOs will be providing area coverage and assistance to our Illinois Veterans there.

Ken Ferguson, IDVA VSO for Lawrence County with offices in Lawrenceville, will staff the Harrisburg VSO office every Monday, from 8:00 am - 4:30 pm beginning on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014.  He can be reached at (618) 943-6189.  The Lawrenceville VSO office will be closed each Monday until further notice. 

Jeff Lewis, IDVA VSO for Jefferson County with offices in Mount Vernon, will staff the Carmi VSO office the fourth Thursday of each month from 8:00 am - 4:30 pm.  He can be reached at (618) 246-2910, Ext. 73404.  The Mount Vernon VSO office will be closed the fourth Thursday of each month notice beginning on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014.

Robert Schuler, the IDVA VSO for Williamson County with offices in Marion, will staff the Metropolis VSO office on the first Thursday of each month from 8:00 am - 4:30 pm.  He can be reached at (618) 997-3309.  The Marion VSO office will be closed the first Thursday of each month notice beginning on Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014.

Veterans wishing to contact a VSO may also use the “Stand Up and Be Counted” online tool at www.veterans.illinois.gov. Veterans who do so will be assisting their fellow veterans by helping IDVA and the entire veteran advocacy community to gain a better understanding of the location and number of Illinois’ veterans. This will assist in planning future services, seeking additional federal VA funding and facilities, and generally support Illinois’ veterans better.

The Veterans’ Service Office is part of a statewide network that assists Illinois veterans in navigating a network of resources and benefits available to them. Offices are staffed by professionals who provide accurate, up-to-date information, answer questions, and assist with preparing and filing of claims for federal, state and local benefits completely free of charge.

Assistance and information provided by VSOs includes:

Compensation Benefits Claims
Document Assistance
Survivor and Burial Benefits
Educational Benefits 
Employment Benefits
Real Estate and Permits
Referral Assistance
Illinois Veterans Homes

For more information, please visit www.veterans.illinois.gov or call 1-800-437-9824.


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