Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Who Gives National Guard Families Back What Their Service Cost Them?

Military family: Enlistment bonus fiasco 'depleted our savings'
By Holly Yan and Curt Devine
October 25, 2016
In 2006, at the height of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the Pentagon enticed soldiers to reenlist by offering hefty bonuses. Haley and Van Meter both accepted $15,000 bonuses to extend their service.
(CNN)Master Sgt. Susan Haley's family is the epitome of military sacrifice. She's a 24-year veteran. Her husband served for 26 years. Their son lost his leg serving in Afghanistan.

But now, the California National Guard is demanding more sacrifices from her -- to the tune of $650 a month.

"$650 is a quarter of our monthly income. And you just can't all of a sudden come up with that money," Haley told CNN's "New Day" on Tuesday. "We have depleted our savings."

Haley is one of thousands of veterans being forced to repay millions of dollars in reenlistment bonuses after the California National Guard awarded the bonuses in error. Years later, officials realized many of the veterans were not actually eligible for the bonuses and said they wanted that money back -- with interest.
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