Yes, veterans can get on Camp Lejeune. They need to follow some security protocols and have proper identification. To get access to more parts of the installation, they also need to have some sort of proof that they were wounded during their service. Their caregivers could also be given access to the U.S Marine Corps base, which marines from many different divisions and their family members call home.
Some marines and their family members who lived at Camp Lejeune for a period of time between 1953 and 1987 suffered illnesses due to water contamination. If you are a victim, our Camp Lejeune water contamination lawyer can seek compensation and justice on your behalf.
What Veterans Need to Get on Camp Lejeune
Veterans who want to access Camp Lejeune have to show their Veterans Health Identification Card. This card can be used to show that they have been awarded a Purple Heart, that they were once a prisoner of war, or that they have a disability that is connected to their time in the service. Under the base’s expanded access rules and the Purple Heart and Disabled Veterans Equal Access Act of 2018, these wounded veterans get access to more of Camp Lejeune and its facilities than the typical visitor.
Caregivers for these veterans can also be given access to Camp Lejeune. They need an eligibility letter from the U.S. Veterans Affairs Office of Community Care. They also need an acceptable form of identification. Forms of ID that can grant a veteran access to Camp Lejeune include:
- United States passport or passport card
- Enhanced driver’s license
- REAL ID driver’s license or ID card
- Department of Defense Common Access Card
- Foreign passport bearing unexpired immigrant or non-immigrant visa or entry stamp
- Federal personal identity verification card
- Veterans Health Identification Card
- Transportation Worker Identification Card
Once officials verify these forms of identification, veterans can enter Camp Lejeune and make use of many of its facilities and amenities.
What Veterans Can Access on Camp Lejeune
A veteran who has been awarded a Purple Heart, spent time as a prisoner of war, or suffers from a disability as a result of their time serving can access many different parts of Camp Lejeune. Veterans and their caregivers can access:
- Base entertainment venues
- Recreational lodging
- Base activities like bowling and golf
- Equipment rental
- Movie theaters
- Vehicle storage
However, a veteran given permission to be on Camp Lejeune cannot access all facilities. Even veterans with expanded access cannot go everywhere or use every amenity. Areas that may be off limits include:
- Education programs
- Indoor pools
- Recreation centers
- Fitness centers
- Community counseling
Caregivers can generally access any areas on Camp Lejeune that the veterans they are accompanying can access.
How Safe is Camp Lejeune Now?
If you are familiar with Camp Lejeune, you may know about its history and its major water contamination issues. Two water sources at Camp Lejeune contained industrial solvents and chemicals, starting in the 1950s and stretching all the way into the 1980s.
The chemicals that made their way into the water supply included benzene, trichloroethylene, and perchloroethylene (PCE). These pollutants may have caused a wide variety of health issues for those who lived there at the time, including:
- Bladder cancer
- Breast cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Lung cancer
- Female infertility
- Multiple myeloma
- Hepatic steatosis
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Renal toxicity
- Parkinson’s disease
This all contributed to a public health crisis at Camp Lejeune, but the water problems have been investigated and fixed in the years since. A report from the United States Marine Corps (USMC) highlights multiple reviews and studies that have found that the water at Camp Lejeune can now be considered safe.
The water is also tested for volatile organic compounds quarterly, which is more often than required by current rules and regulations. Additionally, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) continues to look for connections between polluted water and the development of health issues.
Veterans Who Lived at Camp Lejeune
If you lived at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987, you can seek VA disability benefits. If you have developed any of the above-mentioned health issues after being exposed to the water at the base, you can receive payments that would help you cover your healthcare costs and compensation for your past medical bills.
Our environmental justice lawyers can help you gather the necessary documentation and help you fight for the benefits that you deserve. You do not have to go it alone.
Get a Free Legal Consultation for Your Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Case
If you are a veteran or a family member of a veteran who lived at Camp Lejeune while its water supply was contaminated, contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC.
During a free consultation, we can tell you more about your legal options and the benefits that are available to you. This is no-obligation consultation, so contact our firm today.