CORPUS CHRISTI – Each Tuesday, Nueces County Veterans Services hosts round table discussions for veterans in our area.
Conduct codes on military DD 214 forms are at the top of this week’s agenda.
Tony Hartwell-Garza, a Vietnam Veteran, believes thousands of American veterans are being blacklisted from jobs and resources because of inaccurate information written on their exit forms.
"Even though he got an honorable discharge on honorable conditions with all the benefits, he was not allowed to apply for or go take civil service exams for federal or state agencies because of the code that was listed on his DD 214," Hartwell-Garza said.
Martin Longoria of Nueces County Veterans Services elaborated on said codes.
"There are codes for patterns of misconduct, poor performance, misbehavior. There’s a whole bunch of different codes in there," Longoria said.
Longoria said it can be incredibly difficult for veterans to dispute the information they feel is inaccurate.
"There’s certain codes that are put on there by each branch of service. The veteran can put in a request to have those codes changed, but it’s up to each of the military branches to change those codes," Longoria said.
Hartwell-Garza said he believes this is one reason for the growing population of homeless U.S. veterans.
"All these companies and corporate companies did not care if a veteran had an honorable discharge, what they wanted to know was what was the code listed on their DD 214," Hartwell-Garza.
Veterans are encouraged to attend these special meetings every Wednesday from 9-11 a.m. at the Del Mar College Center for Economic Development.