Salt Lake City Veterans Affairs office to hold first ‘Benefits Fair’ in St. George

Dixie State University students and members of the armed forces stand with their respective flags during DSU's Veterans Day ceremony, St. George, Utah, Nov. 10, 2017 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Area veterans will be able to get assistance for a variety of needs when the Department of Veterans Affairs Salt Lake City regional office’s outreach team hosts its first “Benefits Fair” Aug. 14 in St. George.

The event will take place from 8 a.m. to noon at the St. George Veterans Center, 1664 S. Dixie Drive, Suite C-102.

“This is new for us,” said Thomas Lamb, outreach specialist in the St. George Veterans Affairs office. “They (Veterans Benefits Administration) are sending down two people who are the actual people who handle the benefits paperwork in the Salt Lake office.”

This will be the first time the outreach team has visited Southern Utah, but it may not be the last, said Adam Kinder, a spokesperson for the Veterans Administration in Salt Lake City.

“This is an opportunity to reach a portion of the population that doesn’t have easy access to the regional office here (in Salt Lake City),” he said. “We conduct these fairs around the state and try to see if the need is there by gauging the attendance. If it’s a good turnout, we’ll look at doing more.”

Kinder said veterans will be able to get information on how to file claims, research the status of their claims, vocational rehabilitation and employment, survivor or burial benefits or find out what other benefits may be available to them at the fair.

Another goal of the fair, Kinder said, is to reach veterans who are not currently involved in receiving benefits.

Court Pendleton, the officer who oversees four Utah veterans service offices in the area, said the benefits fair will “help fulfill a real need in this area.”

Pendleton’s office overseas 11 counties in Southern Utah, which he said represents about 10 percent of all veterans in Utah, adding that there are 11,800 veterans in Washington County and another 3,000 in Iron County.

Lamb said the main focus in the St. George office is to offer combat veterans counseling.

“We can help them with marriage problems, PTSD or if they’re just having a bad day,” he said. “They can walk in any time. We’re very accessible.”

Both Lamb and Pendleton said they hope the St. George fair will encourage the Salt Lake City office to hold more events in St. George in the future.

“We hold a quarterly fair of our own,” Pendleton said, “but I think after this event, they will want to have a monthly fair here.”

Event details

  • What: Department of Veterans Affairs Salt Lake City “Benefits Fair.”
  • When: Tuesday, Aug. 14, from 8 a.m. to noon.
  • Where: St. George Veterans Center, 1664 S. Dixie Drive, Suite C-102.

Email: rrees@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

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2 Comments

  • HerePliggyWiggy August 8, 2018 at 8:20 am

    Almost 15,000 veterans between Washington and Iron Counties. You you are one, and are a Combat Vet, and ride a 500cc motorcycle or larger, please consider our group – CVMA – Combat Vets Motorcycle Association. We’re here to help other Veterans with whatever they may need.

  • HerePliggyWiggy August 8, 2018 at 9:06 am

    Should say “If you are one . . .” Can’t edit!

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