Thousands of Air Force veterans who received less-than-honorable discharges due to post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury or other mental health conditions, as well as sexual assault or harassment, will have those separations automatically reviewed due to a new legal settlement.
The service consented to the reviews as part of a settlement in a nationwide class-action lawsuit — Johnson v. Kendall — brought by two airmen in 2021. The lawsuit took aim at the Air Force Discharge Review Board, or AFDRB, for wrongly discharging troops over misconduct linked to a military trauma, such as a combat- or training-related head injury or sexual assault.
“I am pleased that the Air Force is taking steps through this settlement to make the AFDRB more accessible to veterans like me who love and have served this country,” Martin Johnson, a former F-16 crew chief with PTSD who brought the suit on behalf of the settlement class, said in a Thursday press release. “I am glad the Air Force is committed to taking less-than-honorably discharged veterans' mental health and trauma seriously.”
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The Air Force Discharge Review Board will start automatically reconsidering less-than-honorable decisions on applications received between Sept. 13, 2015, and the date of the settlement, which was set to be finalized in…