General Orders and Department Communications # 6
GENERAL ORDER NO. 7
DECEMBER 6, 2019
       
ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Congratulations to Robert Hardy, post 529, for being the top recruiter in November-9 members.
Congratulations to Post 529 - 9 members.
Per the Commander's Membership Program, Robert Hardy has earned a $50 VFW Store Gift Certificate and his Post 529 also earned a $50 VFW Store Gift Certificate ($100 total winnings).
 
STATE MEMBERSHIP:
Membership is vital to the success of our organization and to the services we provide. Most of the time getting a new member is as easy as saying hi and where did you serve? Every community has younger veterans who are eligible, and it should be the priority of every post and every member to let them know the VFW is here and ready to serve them. Massachusetts is at 78.51%, let’s all work together to get to 100%.
 
MEMBERSHIP:
 
Members are reminded that under the subscription dues model, an annual member’s dues expire on the last day of the month of which they paid the previous year. Annual members are encouraged to renew their dues prior to their anniversary month to avoid a lapse in continuous membership.
 
If an Officer or Committee member fails to renew their membership before the last day of the month they renewed in the year before, they shall forfeit eligibility to hold any office for the remainder of the administrative year. This situation creates am administrative headache for the post and should be avoided. Please keep track of your officers and make sure they are renewed in time, or better yet, have them upgrade to a Life Membership!
 
OMS ANNOUNCEMENT
 
Please be advised that the Online Membership System (OMS) will be shutting down at 4:00pm CST on Tuesday, December 31, 2019. Any transactions that are submitted through OMS on December 31, up to the closing time, will be posted to Memstats and Post Query later that evening and available for viewing the morning of January 2, 2019.
 
Mail received at the National HQ prior to December 31, 2019 will be processed and counted in the December total. Mail received after that date, regardless of the postmark date, will not be counted in the December total. We suggest you have your posts mail in their membership as early as possible or take advantage of the Online Membership System tools. Please note that email sent to individual member service center advisors are not guaranteed to be processed; please utilize the msc@vfw.org email address.
 
The OMS system will be back online for the submittal of transactions by 12:00 (noon) CST, Thursday, January 2, 2020; however, membership transactions that are processed will not be posted to Memstats until January 6, 2020......."
 
POST INSPECTIONS:
 
Section 518 provides that the Department Inspector shall require that each Post be inspected in accordance with Department and National guidelines. The purpose of the inspection is to assure that the Post operates in a manner that supports the purposes set forth in the Congressional Charter, complies with the By-Laws, preserves the financial integrity of the Post and protects the interest of the member. Every Post is expected to be inspected at least once each year.
 
It is the duty of the District Inspector to notify the Post Commander, Quartermaster, Adjutant and Trustees of the date and time that the inspection is scheduled. The inspector should allow you enough time to prepare for the visit. The Post inspection will go a lot smoother if it is conducted at some time other than a Post meeting night. If, for any reason, a Post cannot be inspected thoroughly, a report stating the facts must be submitted. It is the responsibility of the Post Quartermaster and Post Adjutant to provide the records necessary to complete the duties of Inspector. When the inspection of a Post is completed, the Post Inspection Form will be made out in triplicate. The yellow copy will be mailed to the Post Commander and a copy should be retained for your files.
 
We are currently behind on inspections. Make every effort to get these done.
 
FORMS:  
 
If you are looking for forms, try these links first! Also, forms are available on our state website, www.vfwma.org , under Member Tools.
 
For all Veterans & Military Support program information and forms, use provided link below:
VMS Formstack Links:

· MAP Grant Application: www.vfw.org/MAPGrantApplication
· MAP Grant Report: www.vfw.org/MAPGrantReport
· Adopt a Unit Application: www.vfw.org/AdoptAUnitApp
· Adopt a Unit Report: www.vfw.org/AdoptAUnitReport
  
VOICE OF DEMOCRACY, PATRIOT’S PEN NATIONAL AWARD and NEW SMART/MAHER VFW NATIONAL CITIZENSHIP EDUCATION TEACHER AWARDs
 
Every Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen first place Department winner will receive a National scholarship or award. The new amount for the Voice of Democracy National Awards now total $154,000 and the Patriot’s Pen National Awards total is now $55,000.
 
Voice of Democracy: http://www.vfw.org/VOD/ Patriot’s Pen: http://www.vfw.org/PatriotsPen/
NEW VOICE OF DEMOCRACY AND PATRIOT’S PEN BROCHURES.
 
For Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen brochures, posters, awards and more, visit the VFW Store: http://www.vfwstore.org/category/programs/voiceofdemocracy for Voice of Democracy and http://www.vfwstore.org/category/programs/patriotspen for Patriot’s Pen.

Please verify that all websites, publications, announcements, etc. has the correct teacher award entry deadlines for the 2019-20 program year. The dates are October 31, 2019, for entries to the Post, November 15, 2019, for completion of Post judging, December 15, 2019, for completion of District judging, January 10, 2020, for completion of Department judging and the Department winners are due to National Headquarters by January 15, 2020. The entry forms are up on the VFW website and are available in the VFW Store.
 
The Department VOD/Patriot Pen Banquet will be held on Sunday January 26 th , 2020 at 12:00 pm at the Doubletree Hotel in Leominster MA.
 
VFW NATIONAL PUBLIC SERVANT AWARDS
 
Departments are asked to submit three nominees (one for each career area) to the VFW Programs office no later than Feb. 1, 2020. VFW Programs will create citations for the following awards in each Department:
 
 VFW National Law Enforcement Award  VFW National Firefighter Award  VFW National Emergency Medical Technician Award
Each Department will receive their three awards and should contact their recipients to arrange a presentation. Department Commanders may present the awards at their Department Convention, but
are encouraged to also present the award in front of the recipient’s peers at a professional association event, city council meeting, etc. The purpose of the second venue is to expose these VFW awards to the general public and especially other law enforcement personnel, firefighters and
 
EMTs, many of whom are veterans eligible for VFW membership. Order plaques and citations for public servants from the VFW Store www.vfwstore.org/searchresults?q=public%20servant
 
NOTE: “NEW” VFW PUBLIC SERVANT AWARD CITATION POST ENTRY FORM .
 
This form has been developed to assist VFW Post Safety Chairmen with an entry form to hand out to the local Fire Department, Police Department, etc. to assist interested individuals in nominating one of their own. The entry forms along with the required documentation are to be returned to the local VFW Post for their judging. Once the winner in each category have been chosen, the Post will forward those entries on to the next level of judging. Simply visit vfw.org, log in to My VFW, then look under Member Resources, click on VFW Training & Support, then click on Community Service & Youth Programs, then look under Public Servant Program.
 
Call for VA Voluntary Service (VAVS) Male and Female Volunteer of the Year Award Nominations
 
Each year the Executive Committee of the VA National Advisory Committee for the VA Voluntary Service (VAVS) recognizes a Male and Female Volunteer of the Year. VFW Department leadership and VFW VAVS Representatives along with the VA Medical Facility Chiefs of VAVS are encouraged
to submit nominations for the VFW VAVS Male and Female Volunteer of the Year to the VFW Director, National Veterans Services. Nominations must be submitted no-later-than close of business Nov. 27, 2019. VFW Department Commanders, Adjutants, Adjutant/Quartermasters will be receiving a notification letter with details about submission and nomination criteria/requirements. For more information and assistance, please contact the VFW at 202.543.2239.
 
ACTION CORPS:
If you are not already an Action Corps Advocate, we urge you to sign up to receive our VFW Action Corps Weekly which will keep you informed about the work we are doing on your behalf on Capitol Hill. By staying connected, you will be the first to know what is happening in
Washington regarding legislation that impacts the lives of veterans and their families, and you will be able to assist in our grassroots efforts by responding when we send out any Action Alerts.
To become an Action Corps Advocate and receive the VFW Action Corps Weekly, sign up at: http://capwiz.com/vfw/mlm/signup.htm .
 
FACEBOOK: Make sure you ‘like’ and ‘share’ the VFW Department of Massachusetts Facebook page. We post updates, links, contest reminders, events, etc. for you. Share the good news of the VFW: https://www.facebook.com/vfwma/
 
DATES TO REMEMBER
 
January 10, 2020             Department Judging for VOD,PP and Teacher Completed
January 11, 2020             Council of Administration Meeting
January 15, 2020             Newspaper Deadline
January 26, 2020            Voice of Democracy, Patriot Pen and Teacher Banquet
   
COMMANDERS’S MESSAGE:
 
“Well, here we are, basically halfway through the year already! I appreciate all you are doing for the Department, especially with membership. We are over 78%, which is good, but I am calling on all of you to step it up a notch and let’s try to get to 90% by January 1, 2020. By doing so it will make the rest of the year less intense for us to reach that 100% goal. In the interim, I have asked my line officers to call the 30+ Posts in the Department that have 10 or less members to reach 100%. It would be great to see this happen, not only in helping to reach our goal, but those thirty posts will have far less stress to deal with during the rest of the year and can concentrate on other issues. Please do your best and remember to ‘do the right thing’ in whatever you do! Lastly, as we enter this Holiday Season, give thanks to those servicemen and women serving abroad who won’t be with us and remember their sacrifices as we enjoy this special time of the year! Both Mary and I wish you and your families the very best for a merry Christmas and a joyous and safe New Year!   
 

BY COMMAND OF: COMMANDER


OFFICIAL: ADJUTANT


NEWSPAPER DEADLINE IS January 15th
Send us your post and district event photos with captions.
(all photos must have captions describing the event and who is in the picture)
EMAIL TO: communications@vfwma.org
Massachusetts VFW | Website