Studies & Reports
Through the Veterans Inclusion Project, Connecticut Veterans Legal Center is proud to be a national leader in policy research, working to understand and dismantle inequity within the Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs. The Veterans Inclusion Project believes all who serve in the U.S. Military are Veterans who deserve to be treated with dignity.
Thanks to the support of donors and key foundation partners, the below reports are free to download and read.
Current Research Project
Over the next two years, CVLC will work with our partner organizations and individual Veterans to expand on the findings of the 2022 Discretionary Injustice report through a qualitative analysis of Black Veterans’ experiences with racism. This work will strengthen both ours and others ability to fight for the rights of every Veteran and update the Military Discharge Upgrade: Legal Policy Manual to include information on identifying racism in military records.
The CVLC Veterans Inclusion Project is possible thanks to the support of key foundation partners and our community of donors. Consider becoming a supporter by making an online donation now or by contacting Shannon Mykins, Director of Development and Communications, at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how you can give a leadership gift towards this critical work.
“I hear stories every day from Veterans who served our country bravely, only to be denied income and healthcare benefits—and even burial benefits—due to minor infractions perpetuated by a racist system. Our leaders also need to hear their stories and understand how this happens. Only then can the VA and the service branches ensure Veterans and service members are treated fairly.”Alden Pinkham, Staff Attorney and Policy Analyst
Veterans Inclusion Project Studies & Reports
How Racial Disparities in the Military’s Administrative Separation System Harm Black Veterans (2022)
Based on more than 1 million military records between 2014-2020, this report shows that Black service members are up to two times as likely as white service members to receive a less than honorable discharge, blocking them from receiving the benefits they have earned. Published in partnership with the Black Veterans Project.
GATEKEEPERS TO OPPORTUNITY
Racial Disparities in Congressional Nominations to the Military Service Academies (2021)
Analyzing application data from 1994-2020, this report shows that white students are significantly overrepresented in congressional nominations for military academies, with members of Congress–on both sides of the aisle–providing only 6% of nominations to Black students and 8% to Hispanic students. Published in partnership with the Veterans Legal Clinic at Yale Law School.
GATEKEEPERS TO OPPORTUNITY
Gender Disparities in Congressional Nominations to the Military Service Academies (2021)
This report shows that in every year since 1995, women have never exceeded 27% of the nominees of current members of Congress to the military service academies.
Military Discharge Upgrade: Legal Practice Manual (2021)
This landmark publication—the first of its kind in 30 years—enables advocates to successfully represent Veterans who unjustly received less-than-honorable or other stigmatizing discharges. Written by attorneys from the Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School’s Veterans Legal Clinic and Connecticut Veterans Legal Center, this book helps bring honor and life-altering benefits to Veterans. Published by the American Bar Association.
The Military Discharge Upgrade Legal Practice Manual work was funded in part by a grant from the Bob Woodruff Foundation, which is dedicated to ensuring that impacted Veterans, service members, their families, and their caregivers thrive long after they return home.
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(top of page) Alden Pinkham, CVLC Staff Attorney and Policy Analyst. Photo by Desirea Stott-Rodgers Photography.
(bottom of page) Charles McClain, Veteran and former client (left) and Robert Lagrua, Veteran and former client (right). Photos by Desirea Stott-Rodgers Photography.