Posted on Saturday, September 06, 2008 - 07:38 AM EST
There still is a lot of confusion on whether or not a veteran is authorized to salute the flag while not in uniform. I understand that Sen. Inhofe (R-Okla.) had legislation (S. 1877) that altered the wording of Section 9 of Title 4 of the U.S. Code that made it into the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008, but the legislation. The legislation allows veterans and service members not in uniform to render a salute during the hoisting, lowering and passing of the flag; however, it did not authorize a salute during the Star-Spangled Banner.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has recently learned that an employee, a data analyst, took home electronic data from VA, which he was not authorized to do. This behavior was in violation of our policies. This data contained identifying information including names, social security numbers, and dates of birth for up to 26.5 million veterans and some spouses, as well as some disability ratings. Importantly, the affected data did not include any of VA’s electronic health records nor any financial information. The employee’s home was burglarized and this data was stolen. The employee has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation.