Disability benefits: The difference between a roof and the street by publicinsightnetwork published on 2012/11/19 19:27:47 +0000 The Department of Veterans Affairs is two years away from a goal of ending veteran homelessness by 2015. A big part of that goal is helping homeless veterans access disability payments, which can make the difference between sleeping under a roof or on the streets. But the VA’s system for processing disability claims is badly strained. Nationally, the average wait time to receive benefits is more than eight months. In some places, like Phoenix AZ, the wait can stretch to a year. Reporter Samara Freemark went to Phoenix to talk with some homeless veterans who are waiting on disability benefits claims.