President Trump says veterans have not received the type of care they deserve and have not been treated fairly – that will change under his administration.
Trump on March 17 held a listening session on the VA and the WH issued remarks that said he has complete faith in his VA Secretary David Shulkin and plans to ensure veterans get the care to which they are entitled to.
We’re all united by a very common mission: We will protect those who protect us. I’ve been saying that a lot over the last two years at rallies and speeches. We will protect those who protect us, and that’s just starting, because I think the veterans have not been treated fairly,” President Trump said.
Trump went on to say Shulkin, brilliant doctors and businessmen are forming a board to address the VA. “This is — no more games going to be played at the VA,” promised Trump. While it’s unclear at this point what changes will be made at the VA to ensure veterans get the care they deserve, what is clear is that Trump is poised to tackle the issue as he promised on the campaign trail.
Under the Obama Administration, scandals continued to rock the VA and the agency’s failures continued to make headlines. “Hundreds of veterans died waiting for care at Phoenix VA hospital,” was one such headline, “307,000 veterans may have died awaiting care Veteran’s Affair health care” was another bombshell report.
In addition, the falsification of patients’ records, to show improved wait times at the VA occurred in several states, showing widespread record manipulation.
The Obama Administration increased the agency’s budget each year, claiming the additional funding was needed to give veterans the care they needed. In several investigative pieces I wrote detailed records showing the VA spent $500 million on conference room makeovers, draperies, new furniture, etc., as veterans died awaiting care. Another $3.3 billion was spent under on the agency’s buildings instead of veterans’ care.
Compared to his predecessor, whose administration was unable to change the mismanagement and negligence at the VA, Trump’s promise to change the agency is the first step in the right direction. Coming during the first few months of his administration shows he is prioritizing veterans and the care they receive.
As Commander-in-Chief, I will not accept substandard service for our great veterans. Every member of our government is expected to do their utmost to ensure our veterans have the care that they’re so entitled to — maybe more entitled to than anybody,” Trump said. “And that hasn’t been the way they were treated. But it is the way they’re going to be treated.”
Shulkin also exempted numerous VA positions from the hiring freeze imposed by Trump in January. Those positions included those in the VA’s Benefits Administration and the Board of Veterans’ Appeals, which provide essential veterans’ benefits, as Federal News Radio reported.
Feature image: Department of Veterans Affairs Motto – The Department of Veterans Affairs Building on Vermont Avenue in Washington, DC, By: JeffOnWire.