Navigation Links
Sociologist finds combat veterans face more lifelong socioeconomic challenges

WASHINGTON, DC, August 2, 2010 From the many images sent home from foreign battlefields over the last several decades, Americans have viewed the plight of their country's combat-weary veterans as stark and often iconic scenes that seem somehow frozen in time. But recent research at Washington State University (WSU) suggests that, for many U.S. veterans, combat is a defining experience that often sets the trajectory of the balance of their lives.

In research published in the August 2010 issue of the American Sociological Review (ASR), Alair MacLean, an assistant professor with the Department of Sociology at WSU Vancouver, reports that in comparison to both non-veterans and veterans who never engaged in combat, Americans returning from combat face significant socioeconomic challenges, as evidenced by consistently higher rates of disability and unemployment.

"Veterans who saw combat started their work lives at a relative disadvantage that they were unable to overcome," MacLean said. "Soldiers exposed to combat were more likely than non-combat veterans to be disabled and unemployed in their mid-20s and to remain so throughout their worklife."

Using data taken from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, a longitudinal survey of families and individuals which has been conducted annually since 1968, MacLean studied the characteristics of both veterans and non-veterans who would have been between the ages of 25 and 55 in any year between 1968 and 2003. The sample included men who served or otherwise would have become eligible for military service during World War II, as well as during the Korean, post-Korean, Viet Nam, and post-Viet Nam eras.

MacLean said the rate at which both non-veterans and non-combat veterans reported themselves to be disabled remained fairly consistent at roughly 10 percent of the population in each of the years reviewed by the study.

"Compared with these two groups of men, combat veterans were disabled at relatively high rates," she said. "In most survey years, they were more likely than non-veterans to be disabled. In all survey years, they were more likely than non-combat veterans to be disabled."

Additionally, MacLean found that combat veterans were more likely than the other groups to become disabled over time. "In 1968, slightly over 10 percent (of combat veterans) were disabled. This increased to over 20 percent in 2003," she said.

And while combat veterans tended to be employed in the initial years of the surveyed period at higher rates than the other two groups, MacLean said they reported significantly higher levels of unemployment than either non-veterans or non-combat veterans in most years after 1975.

"What the data suggests is that combat may scar veterans who experience it, leading them to be less able to find work between the ages of 25 and 55, the prime working years," she said.


Contact: Daniel Fowler
American Sociological Association

Related medicine news :

1. Sociologist expands US conversation on human rights
2. TV drama can be more persuasive than news program, study finds
3. Study finds racial gaps continue in heart disease awareness
4. Luth Researchs IndicatorEDG(TM) Study Finds Americans Hopes of Achieving Their Dreams Are Fading
5. American Heart Association Rapid Access Journal Report: Study Finds Racial Gaps Continue in Heart Disease Awareness, Low Knowledge of Heart Attack Warning Signs Among Women
6. New American Heart Association Survey Finds Heart Disease and Stroke Patients Face Significant Barriers in Obtaining Quality, Affordable Care
7. Survey Finds Many Men Complaining of Ill-Fitting Condoms
8. Research finds hazards from secondhand smoke in bars and restaurants
9. Kaiser Analysis Finds Record Medicaid Enrollment Growth in 2009
10. Battlefield camaraderie yields long-term dividends for veterans, study finds
11. More Bars Equals More Assaults, Study Finds
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... 01, 2015 , ... PartnerTech , a leader in ... since 2008. Gary Bruce, President of PartnerTech North America, currently serves as Director ... amount of time in Sweden since joining PartnerTech based in Malmo, Sweden. He ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Dr. Arash ... Modern Man for 2015. , Angeleno Magazine is a division of Modern ... in 1994, Modern Luxury includes more than 50 magazine titles across 15 major ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 30, 2015 , ... Third Molar SEO , one ... officially launched a sleek, mobile-ready and user-centric redesigned website. , Vivek Srivastava, founder ... outlines the benefits that its SEO services provide to dentists and why Third ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... & Caicos Islands, BWI (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... 2015. Recently Caribbean Journal, one of the leading digital news sites highlighting Caribbean ... top reason? The weather. While much of North America shivers under chilly grey ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... The National ... 2015-2016 inductee into its VIP Woman of the Year Circle. She is recognized ... networking organization exclusively for professional women, boasting 850,000 members and over 200 operating ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... RATON, Fla. , Nov. 30, 2015   ... (the Institute) announced today that it has finalized ... device start-up company with technology developed at Florida State ... publicly-funded research, and bridges early funding gaps for companies ... and research institutions. --> ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Ended 30 September 2015 2014RestatedChange%Turnover 545,575 , 518,852 , 5.2 ... 384,242 , 9.8 Hospital Management Service Income ... (18.3) Medical Insurance Administration Service Income , 2,780 ... Accessories Sales , 89,645 , 94,580 ... , 2,917 , (3.3) Gross Profit ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... -- PTS Diagnostics, the U.S.-based manufacturer of point-of-care biometric testing ... systems, and PTS Detect™ cotinine systems, has announced ... propel the company into the mHealth market. ... . The technology is a system that interfaces with ... tablets, and uses test strip technology already developed by ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: