Tools for Retaining Service Members and Veterans

While it can be daunting, employers can create workspaces that are conducive to hiring and retaining Service members and Veterans.

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Friends

To see if someone is at home, we might reach out by telephone, or e-mail, just to stay in touch; But Facebook “friends?” Not so much.

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Thank You for Your Service: The Effort Behind the Words

“Thank you for your service.” We’ve all heard the words, we might have even said them ourselves. While thanking a Service member for his or her service to our country is a nice gesture, many individuals and organizations do not understand or know how to provide meaningful thanks beyond kind words or a Military discount.

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By the Numbers: Addressing Veteran Suicide

In September of 2017, the Department of Veterans Affairs released findings from its analysis of Veteran suicide data for 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. The findings were based upon a comprehensive examination of more than 55 million records from 1979 to 2014. Among many other things, they found that risk for suicide was 22 percent higher among veterans when compared to U.S. non-veteran adults.We lose a veteran to suicide every 72 minutes, equaling 20 veterans a day.

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Alaskan Animal Rescue Friends ( AARF) is an IRS recognized 501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation. AARF is a group of dedicated volunteers working to help the dogs of Alaska. We rescue, rehabilitate, and adopt dogs into loving homes. Most of our dogs come to AARF from rural communities through other rescue organizations such as Bethel Friends of Canines, but we also take in dogs from local animal control facilities, owner releases, and neglect and medical cases.

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Canyons and Ice: PBS Documentary to Feature Local Alaska Legend

Canyons and Ice: The Wilderness Travels of Dick Griffith chronicles the far-flung journeys of Alaskan legend Dick Griffith, and now it’s official. His story is being made into a film. A PBS documentary about Griffith’s life was fully-funded as of April 5, thanks to partnerships with Alaska Public Media, a Rasmuson Foundation grant, the generous support of Dr. John Lapkass, and the contributions of dozens of people in and outside of Alaska who donated to the campaign.

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Yuguunga

Wiinga Ayagiaruunga. Manuqutarmiunguunga. Mamterillermiungulua-llu. Kassatun ayukengerma. Tuall, Yuguunga-wii. Hello. My name is Ayagiaq. I am from Manokotak and Bethel. I am non-Native on the outside, but I am Yugtun.When I found out the May issue of the ECHO was focusing on what being Alaskan means to you, I knew immediately that I wanted to write on the topic. However, I wasn’t prepared for the internal struggle I would face as I mulled around how to describe it. Then, I realized that being Alaskan meant not having to define it because it is in everything I do, everything I say, and everything I am.

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Staying sane in the store checkout lane, and beyond…

Impatience and intolerance for others seem to be hallmarks of 21st century American culture, as well as a general lack of awareness of others. Nowhere are those trends more evident than at the local supermarkets. I am probably just as guilty as others when it comes to supermarket impatience. When I only have a few items, I’ll make a beeline to the self-checkout lane. It bothers me, however, because I wonder if I’m ultimately contributing to the elimination of jobs.

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Alaska’s “Forgotten Gardens”

Drive down any highway, and you will see intentional landscaping. These areas are planted with lovely perennial trees, bushes, and grass with the intention of beautifying our country, making our commute a little brighter and improving our mental state. However, more often, you may notice this landscaping has been neglected. It is now overgrown. Unsightly and dangerous, blocking visibility for drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists. Not at all meeting the intended purpose of improving our mental state.These “Forgotten Gardens” have quite a history, and a future as well.   The story begins with good intentions, but there was a fatal flaw in the plan.

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My work for the Alaska Legislature ended in mid-April after 100 days. Reflections upon what I had witnessed in Juneau over this time began while aboard the Alaska Marine Highway vessel M/V Columbia as we pled the waters toward Haines. As a certified Alaska teacher I have long been amazed at how Public Education funding is handled as a political hot potato.

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