Drone pilots are part of the latest soldier populations to be evaluated for issues regarding soldiers’ mental health, during deployment. The role of drone pilots may seem safe from physical hazards, but the schedules, remote combat exposure, and emotional situations these soldiers are placed in can create mental hazards instead.
Soldiers involved in the drone aircraft programs fill a variety of roles, but the conditions are similar: long hours staring at computer screens where they witness combat from thousands of miles away with little or no ability to react. While most of a drone pilots’ duties involve surveillance and little enemy attack, they must bear witness to the attacks involving the ground troops.
In recent evaluations by the Air Force, drone pilots may often feel a sense of helplessness when they see ground troops in active combat and can’t intervene to help. Many reported emotional turmoil when they had to survey battle zones for casualty reports.
Facing these difficult emotional situations, during active duty, can lead to future long-term damage to a soldiers’ mental health. While the Air Force is helping current soldiers cope, by offering better access to psychologists and chaplains, for recent Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans the damage may already have been done.
Psychological disabilities are among the many conditions that may qualify veterans for disability benefits. It’s necessary to have mental health evaluations and evidence to support your claim, which an attorney can help you with.
If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability attorney from LaVan & Neidenberg is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veteran’s disability rights firm today – 1-888-234-5758.