Atomic Vets Get Recognition

The agency charged with countering weapons of mass destruction will soon start awarding Atomic Veterans Service Certificates that recognize troops who have been exposed to radiation from nuclear weapons.

The certificates, authorized in the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2019, recognize the 500,000 veterans who were exposed to radiation during the development of an atomic bomb during and after World War II, the post-war occupation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, or any test of a nuclear weapon with an atmospheric detonation, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency said in a June 3 release.

The agency was tapped to manage the AVSC program because of its expertise in determining radiation exposure through the Nuclear Test Personnel Review Program, the release said.

Being awarded an AVSC doesn’t guarantee any benefits, as the Department of Veterans Affairs determines eligibility.

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