We are truly the land of the free because of the brave. On Veterans Day, we celebrate and thank all of the brave men and women who have answered the call to serve and were willing to sacrifice to protect this great nation.
I’m proud to represent Fort Worth, Texas, which has such a rich military history. Originally founded as a military installation, the people of Fort Worth continue to be staunch advocates for our military and veterans. As a result, we are also honored to have so many veterans living in the area.
In addition, we have a strong network of non-profits that serve the needs of our veteran community and their families. I serve on the United Way Veteran’s Fund that meets annually to provide allocations to veteran programs. This week, I visited a brand new facility that was supported by this fund and provides counseling for veterans, as well as to their children and spouses. This incredible program recognizes, and works to address, the sacrifice the entire family makes.
It’s important that as we thank the generations of men and women who wore the uniform of our country, we remember our commitments to them. Our war fighters put everything on the line for our nation, and they deserve nothing but the best treatment, compassion and care. When they don’t receive the care they need and deserve, we have a moral obligation to fix the problem.
Many times, the problems with the system are brought to our attention by the veterans themselves. It is vital that we listen to them. Over the past year, my office has helped veterans with many problems they were having with the federal government, which included not receiving the medical and mental health treatment needed and delays receiving their benefits checks.
We must recognize that the system is not working for far too many of our veterans. There is much more work to be done to ensure we fulfill the commitment made to take care of these patriots.
That is why House Republicans have a plan to reform and refocus the Department of Veterans Affairs so it better meets the needs of the veterans it exists to serve. We do this by requiring the VA to expand its partnerships with community providers and through supporting more research on the physical and mental health issues common among the veteran community. We must also reform the VA personnel system so that employees are held accountable for the quality of service they provide our veterans.
This Veterans Day, let’s express our gratitude to our veterans and their families by not only by thanking them, but by working to ensure they get the care they deserve.