This website is no longer actively maintained
Some material and features may be unavailable

Need to Know, November 11, 2011: Coming home: The enduring sacrifice

For Veteran’s Day, Need to Know dedicates the entire half-hour to exploring the economic and emotional difficulties many U.S. troops face once they return home.

First, we take a look at the hardships our veterans endure years after their tours of duty. Because many troops enlist before they go to college, they often find it difficult to find or keep jobs, and some end up losing their homes. Then, documentarian Sebastian Junger proposes a way to help veterans who struggle with the painful memories of civilian deaths: a memorial to the victims of American wars.

And finally, essayist Marcos Villatoro profiles a housekeeper whose son is fighting in Iraq, as part of our ongoing series “American Voices.” Maria Hinojosa hosts. Check your local listings for details.

Also, don’t forget to vote in our poll.

Watch the individual segments:

Coming home: Veterans’ stories of hardship

Anchor Maria Hinojosa explores joblessness and homelessness among veterans who fought in Iraq or Afghanistan. Because many of these young veterans enlisted without going to college, they often find it difficult to get work once they return, especially in a difficult economy. This sometimes leads to extreme financial hardship, causing some of them to lose their homes.

A different kind of memorial

In an essay for Need to Know, documentarian Sebastian Junger says more needs to be done to care for American troops scarred by their experiences in battle. He proposes that a memorial be built where veterans can go to help cope with civilian deaths.

American Voices: Mopping up

In our recurring “American Voices” series, which offers a platform for essayists with diverse backgrounds and diverse points of view, Marcos Villatoro of Los Angeles profiles a housekeeper whose son is now serving in Afghanistan. He says her job is like her son’s: they both clean up the mess left by others

Watch more full episodes of Need to Know.