Informational program to provider agencies
√ Outreaches also planned for North Tonawanda, Lewiston
By Terry Duffy
Attention veterans: The Town of Porter and Veterans Affairs Outreach will host an informational outreach session from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, July 28, at Porter Town Hall, 3265 Creek Road. Open to veterans from throughout Niagara and Erie counties, this event is being presented in partnership with the New York State Division of Veterans Services and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
“It’s the first outreach since 2019,” said Art Lawson, Village of Wilson mayor and Veterans Benefit Advisor 1 with the New York State Division of Veterans Services.
Lawson, who serves as a local coordinator for veterans outreach programs in Buffalo/Niagara, was active in the first Town of Porter event. Held in 2019, the session drew dozens to Porter Town Hall to learn more about the variety of services available for service members.
“We’ve added two providers: the McGuire program and Niagara County Employment and Training,” Lawson said of next week’s event.
The veterans assistance program is open to all service members from all recent periods of U.S. conflict. It is expected to include representatives on hand to work with veterans with consultations for claims; health care enrollments; mental health services; employment assistance; services for the aging and general assistance programs.
Agencies attending the event include the Buffalo Vet Center; WNY Heroes; Fidelis Care; the Niagara County Office for the Aging; New York State Department of Labor; the Veterans Administration and the Veterans Outreach Center.
“This is the first of series of outreaches for this year,” Lawson said. “We’re doing another one on Aug. 10 in North Tonawanda, and we’re doing one on Aug. 24 in the Village of Lewiston at the Village Hall (Red Brick Municipal Building).
“It’s the first outreach since 2019; a couple of years ago we had a good turnout of about 80 veterans (in Porter). The outreach was great; we don’t get that many in the cities.”
Lawson encourages service members to attend this informational event, and to bring their DD 214 discharge papers to help facilitate any pertinent claims.
“We’ll have people for the veteran’s service offices there,” he said. “We’ll have organizations like the Department of Labor, the Veteran’s Outreach Center; organizations like Fidelis Care and the Niagara County Office for the Aging expected. Basically, we’ll be having informational booths and people representing their organizations.”
For more information on the July 28 event, Lawson can be contacted via email at [email protected], or call 716-862-8580.