Know Before You Go, 'Cause There's No Reset Button

This is a collaboration with the Ya-Ya Network (Youth Activists-Youth Allies), a youth of color-led antimilitarist organization based in NYC.

Our leaflet breaks down the enlistment contract and life in the military and provides new stats about sexual assault in the military, racial disparities in becoming an officer, and stop-loss.

FACT: Recruiters do not always tell the truth. You could be sent to war any time regardless of promises made to have a non-combat job like mechanics.

FACT: Recruits sign a one-sided agreement, not a contract, in which the government can change any of the terms, but you cannot.

FACT: There are staggering statistics showing veterans suffer from unemployment, mental illness, substance abuse, homelessness and suicide.

FACT: Sexual violence in the military has been called an epidemic, with 70 incidences per day.

FACT: Military service is not a direct path to U.S. citizenship.


By law the U.S. Government has the right to recruit you into the military, but you have the right to opt out.

view / download PDF: Act to Protect Your Privacy from Military Recruiters

Check out these resources to find out ALL the facts

What is the True Cost of being a soldier?

  • Number of veterans in the U.S. as of 2014: approximately 22.5 million²
  • Increasing numbers of returning military personnel: according to the Mass. Dept. of Veterans’ Services, approximately 31,000 service members have returned to the Commonwealth since Sept. 11, 2001.
  • Between 529,000 and 840,000 veterans are homeless at some time during the year.²
  • On any given night, more than 300,000 veterans are living on the streets or in shelters in the U.S.
  • Approx. 33% of homeless males in the U.S. are veterans.²
  • Veterans are twice as likely as other Americans to become chronically homeless.²
  • Veterans represent 11% of the adult civilian population, but 26% of the homeless population, according to the Homeless Research Institute (2007).
  • Veterans are more at risk of becoming homeless than non-veterans
  • The number of homeless Vietnam-era veterans, male and female, is greater than the number of soldiers who died during the war.¹
  • Primary causes of homelessness among veterans are:

    1. Lack of income due to limited education and lack of transferable skills from military to civilian life (especially true of younger veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan)

    2. Combat-related physical health issues and disabilities

    3. Combat-related mental health issues and disabilities

    4. Substance abuse problems that interfere with job retention

    5. Weak social networks due to problems adjusting to civilian life

    6. Lack of services

    Sources include: ¹ U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ² National Coalition for Homeless Veterans

  • Resources from National Network Opposing Militarization of Youth

    view / download PDF: Catalog of Counter-recruitment Materials