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Fired VA Secretary Shulkin Issues Dire Warning: Vets should not have to wait years for benefits

  • Part 1: Fired VA Head David Shulkin Issues a Dire Warning on His Way Out the Door
    • The former Obama appointee fears privatization could harm veterans for years to come.
  • Part 2: Vets should not have to wait years for benefits
    • The Trump administration and Congress need to follow through on … reforms, give the VA the resources it needs, and hold the agency accountable.

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest


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Part 1: Fired VA Head David Shulkin Issues a Dire Warning on His Way Out the Door

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  • Shulkin was one of the few remaining government officials who believe it is their respsonibility to help people, not businesses. His departure is worrisome to all of us who feel the same.
  • The former Obama appointee fears privatization could harm veterans for years to come.

Liz Posner,  AlterNet

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March 29, 2018 | Donald Trump did the inevitable Wednesday night and dismissed embattled Veteran Affairs Secretary David Shulkin. The former Obama official has been replaced by the president's personal physician, Admiral Ronny Jackson, who has no qualifiable leadership experience and raised millions of eyebrows last year after publicly proclaiming that Trump was “in excellent health.” But Shulkin refused to go quietly, warning the country that the chaos in the White House could harm veterans for years to come.

In an op-ed for the New York Times published hours after his firing, Shulkin cited his various accomplishments during his tenure as the head of VA, including reducing veteran unemployment from 10.2 percent to 3.5 percent and cutting wait times for health care services. He also issued a blistering rebuke to the wave of free-market cheerleaders who have swept into the federal government since Trump’s election.

Liz Posner is a managing editor at AlterNet. Her work has appeared on Forbes.com, Bust, Bustle, Refinery29, and elsewhere.

Full story … 





Part 2: Vets should not have to wait years for benefits

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  • More than ever, American democracy is for sale, bartered to the most powerful, leased to the most connected, sold to the most moneyed.
  • The Trump administration and Congress need to follow through on these reforms, give the VA the resources it needs and hold the agency accountable. Men and women in uniform injured in service to their country should not have to wait years to get the benefits they have earned.

Tampa Bay (FL) Times

November 14, 2017 | American military members hurt in service to their country should not have to wait a lifetime for the benefits they deserve. But that’s a reality of the disability process at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, which hasn’t made paying benefits a priority and needs a hard kick from Congress to clean up its act.

The veterans benefits system is a century-old behemoth that has not kept pace with the times or the demands on its resources. As the New York Times reported Tuesday, the system pays out more than $78 billion each year to 5 million beneficiaries. But there also are more than 470,000 veterans who have been denied benefits and appealed — and their cases are grinding through the claims process at a glacial pace, with some cases taking years if not decades to resolve.

Full story … 

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