Jeff Sessions and a bipartisan group of Senators send President a letter seeking swift reduction of VA backlog
As all of our Veteran friends are aware, the Veterans Administration is making our Vets wait for years before approving disability claims. Today, Senator Sessions and his colleagues on both sides of the aisle sent a letter to President Obama asking that he personally and swiftly intervene help speed things up. The text of the letter is below.
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear Mr. President:
We are writing to request that you take direct action and involvement in ending the current Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability claims backlog.
After a decade of war, and despite the VA’s efforts to modernize, more than 600,000 veterans are still stuck in the VA’s disability claims backlog. While the average wait time for first time disability claims currently ranges between 316 and 327 days, veterans in certain parts of the country are waiting even longer – 681 days in Reno, 642 in New York, 625 in Pittsburgh, 619 in Los Angeles, 612 in Indianapolis, 586 in Houston, and 510 in Philadelphia. In the worst cases, veterans have waiting and continue to wait 800 days, 900 days, and even more than 1000 days for a disability claims decision from the VA.
In the last four years, the number of claims pending for over a year has grown by over 2000%, despite a 40% increase in the VA’s budget. As a reminder, during this same time period, Congress has given VA everything it has asked for in terms of more funding and more employees; however, this has not eliminated the backlog of claims. Solving this problem is critical for veterans of all generations. We need direct and public involvement from you to establish a clear plan to end the backlog once and for all.
This country must be grateful for the safe homecoming of every single man and woman who has served in harm’s way. Our joy at their return must be reflected in our commitment to helping all who have served. We respectfully ask you and your administration to find as solution that ensures that no veterans are stuck in the VA backlog.
Thank you for your consideration of this matter.
Let’s hope that the President will take time out of his eternal campaigning to take action on this issue. Our Veterans deserve better treatment than they are getting, especially those who suffer disabling conditions resulting from their honorable service. To see the text of the original letter and the signatures of the Senators, go here.