Supporting our Veterans with Disabilities – A Memorial Day Blog

A guest blog with information provided by Shane Nicholson, Outreach Manager, Legal|Finders and prologue from Stan Kimer

Prologue: Both people with disabilities and veterans are often quite an under-utilized source of talent, and organizations need to do more to provide employment opportunities for these communities to contribute to our economy. Part of my consulting practice focuses on building inclusive recruiting strategies (I am offering a 4-hour workshop through the National Diversity Council in August). This blog now provides resources for veterans with disabilities getting the legal support that they need.

From Shane Nicholson:

In the United States in 2020, there were 4.7 million veterans with a service-connected disability — or a debilitating injury they incurred during active duty service, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Disabled veterans, or those veterans who are facing debilitating illness or injury post-combat, may face great challenges when they return home — challenges beyond the scope of their injuries. Legal|Finders is a resource connecting people to best-in-class lawyers in their local areas. Because of our passion for community involvement, we wanted to use our expertise to create free informational resources for our often-forgotten veterans.

In our guide,, we dive into different points such as:

* Why Disabled Veterans Experience Lack of Resources
* Discrimination Against Disabled Veterans
* Important Rights for Disabled Veterans
* National Resources to Help Bridge the Gap

Introduction: At Legal|Finders, we have made it our mission to serve those who have selflessly served our nation. With a deep respect for the sacrifices made by veterans, we have established a specialized practice dedicated to providing comprehensive legal assistance to veterans and their families. Our team of experienced attorneys is passionate about supporting veterans through the complex legal landscape, ensuring they receive the benefits, compensation, and justice they deserve.

Expertise in Veterans’ Law. Understanding the unique challenges faced by veterans, our law firm has developed an extensive expertise in veterans’ law. Our dedicated team possesses an in-depth knowledge of the laws and regulations that govern veterans’ benefits, disability claims, healthcare, employment, housing, and other critical areas. We are well-versed in the intricacies of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system and the appeals process, enabling us to navigate the complex bureaucracy on behalf of our clients.

Veterans returning home need an equitable opportunity to find jobs leveraging their skills

Comprehensive Legal Services. We provide a wide range of legal services tailored specifically to meet the needs of veterans. Whether you require assistance with disability claims, appealing denied benefits, obtaining healthcare coverage, securing employment rights, resolving housing disputes, or addressing other legal matters, our team is here to guide you every step of the way. We are committed to ensuring that veterans and their families receive the support and resources necessary to rebuild their lives and achieve a brighter future.

Personalized Approach and Compassionate Advocacy. At Legal|Finders, we understand the personal and emotional impact that legal issues can have on veterans. That’s why we take a personalized approach, taking the time to listen, understand your unique circumstances, and tailor our legal strategies accordingly. Our team of compassionate advocates is dedicated to providing the highest level of representation, guiding veterans through the legal process with empathy, patience, and respect. We strive to empower our clients by keeping them informed, involved, and actively engaged in their cases.

Collaborative Network and Resources. To better serve our veteran clients, we have cultivated a robust network of professionals and resources. We work closely with medical experts, vocational rehabilitation specialists, counselors, and other professionals who understand the specific needs of veterans. This collaborative approach allows us to develop comprehensive and well-rounded legal strategies that address not only the legal aspects but also the broader challenges veterans may face. We are committed to connecting veterans with the support services and resources they require to enhance their overall well-being and quality of life.

Conclusion: At Legal|Finders, we take immense pride in assisting the heroes who have bravely served our country. Our unwavering dedication to veterans’ rights, combined with our extensive legal expertise, ensures that veterans and their families receive the comprehensive support they deserve. If you are a veteran in need of legal assistance or seeking guidance on any veterans’ legal matters, we are here to help you navigate the path toward justice, benefits, and a brighter future.”

A great diversity experience – Theater Breaking Through Barriers

Two of the actors featured in “The Artificial Jungle,” David Harrell and Anita Hollander

NOTE: The play featured in this blog runs through July 1st at the Clurman Theatre, 410 West 42nd Street, New York City. Link to Theater Breaking Through Barriers for information and tickets.

In early June, my mother and I took a quick weekend trip to New York City so she could have a reunion with her best friend from college from the early 1950s. Since that was planned for Sunday, I arranged for us to see an off-Broadway play on Saturday afternoon, Charles Ludlam’s “The Artificial Jungle” in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Ridiculous Theatrical Company.

The play was a combination comedy and thriller featuring only five characters. Nerdy Chester, his attractive over-sexed wife Roxanne and his doting mother all live together and run a pet shop in New York City selling exotic animals. They are looking for some additional help with the store and hire sexy mysterious Zach. Zach and Roxanne have an affair and then plot to kill off Chester by throwing him into the piranha tank. The 5th character is Chester’s best friend Frankie, a good hearted but somewhat incompetent policeman. Do read this fascinating synopsis and review from the NY Times from when the play first ran in 1986.

Anthony Michael Lopez (Zach) and Alyssa H. Chase (Roxanne) plotting Chester’s demise in “The Artificial Jungle”. Credit: Sara Krulwich/The New York Times

What is special about this current production? Theater Breaking Through Barriers features actors with a wide range of disabilities. David Harrell (link), who plays leading man Chester, is an actor, speaker and disability advocate with one hand. And Anita Hollander (link), who plays Chester’s mother is a long time actress, singer, lyricist, producer and teacher who lost a leg due to cancer. Both actor and actress were marvelous in their respectful roles. In addition Anthony Michael Lopez (link), who portrays Zach was born with a leg defect, and other articles about the cast say that one of the five actors is also legally blind, though all my google searching could not help me identify who.

As a diversity consultant (deep expertise in LGBT, but half my clients engage me for all areas of diversity and inclusion,) I do take away two lessons from this production:

First, that differently-abled people are fully capable of handling the same tasks and taking on the same responsibilities as people without disabilities, and may perform just as well or better. This is a very important message for the business world where often unconscious bias could lead us to prejudge people with disabilities as less capable. During the play, the acting, directing and story were so good, the disabilities of the cast were non-apparent.

Second, the world of entertainment should use more “imperfect” people in roles. So often shows, movies and plays have the most beautiful flawless people on stage. Naturally in entertainment, we like to get lost in the fantasy of gorgeous people in a glamorous story, but it is also nice to experience entertainment that much more parallels real life.

I do thank Theater Breaking Through Barriers and the Clurman Theatre helping my mother and me have a great weekend in New York, and I am pleased to also make a charitable contribution to TBTB through my business. And if you are in or going to New York, do go see “The Artificial Jungle!” Link for info and tickets. And do pay close attention to the piranhas in the tank.