Many Americans often pay tribute to veterans on holidays, but what happens when the fanfare fades and it’s time to go home?
For most Americans, that means a bed. But for the veterans they were honoring, that can mean a stoop, an alley or a shelter.
“On average, there’s about 2,000 veterans experiencing homelessness in Arizona,” said Joan Serviss with the Arizona Coalition to End Homelessness, adding that 60 percent of those are in Maricopa County.
Serviss said the homeless veterans include both those from the recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan and earlier wars.
“A lot of the veterans experienced Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or they experience a traumatic brain injury,” she said.
Serviss said the combination of possible injury, psychological damage suffered in combat and possible substance abuse create a vicious cycle for veterans, one that is difficult to extricate themselves from.
“There’s just a deterioration of their environment and then they end up becoming chronically homeless veterans living on the streets,” said Serviss, adding that it’s difficult to discern a homeless person from a homeless veteran.
According to Serviss, the number of homeless veterans have increased since the downturn of the economy.
To donate to the Arizona Coalition to End Homelessness, go to azceh.org.
- 6 coolest things brewing in Arizona
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever
- Gameday recipes and beers to match
- 6 reasons the Cardinals are driven to win the Super Bowl
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths