Stop the VA & leaders from second-guessing & cutting disabled veteran benefits.
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Recently the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has been quietly reevaluating disabled veterans who have physician-proven disabilities. The VA and our leaders must stop trying to remove established disability, support, and treatment for veterans. Even veterans who are deemed 100% disabled by physicians are being re-judged, all with the threat of having their support and treatment removed. This unnecessary bureaucratic, emotional, and financial stress is a disservice to disabled veterans.
- "After waiting 5 years to get a prosthetic leg, why would anyone think to judge that person and remove his benefits because 'he finally learned how to walk. So he doesn't need our support.' That's extremely troubling. The same goes with those disabled by severe emotional trauma. 'You've finally learned how to walk down the street with your PTSD. We're removing your disability support.' Who would take away a prosthetic or support? Who would do that to a disabled veteran?"
- [Name redacted for protection]
President of a WA 501(c)3 charity that helps veterans with PTSD.
Those with PTSD are being reevaluated because the wounds are easily concealed and easier for the VA to deny.
These evaluation appointments are mandatory and are strictly scheduled (see scanned letter below). Veterans are required to relive and recount the events that have led to their debilitating trauma to justify their already-established support. This is extremely unfair to veterans who have PTSD and have already been found by a physician to be disabled.
The VA claims they are attempting to help veterans, however one veteran--who is 100% disabled--is also being reevaluated. "They can't 'up' my benefits anymore. The only reason they'd reevaluate me is to try to cut my benefits. I'm already 100% disabled. I can't go through another bureaucratic nightmare again."
- There is no way to excuse oneself from these appointments.
- There is no method of acquiring more information.
- If a veteran misses their appointment, say if they're on vacation with their family, the VA has the right to remove support.
- The bureaucratic process is strictly regulated and the VA insulates themselves from any inquiries by using 3rd parties to conduct these evaluations.
Please help our veterans. Ask our leaders to stop placing veterans with military service related injuries through unneeded bureaucratic, emotional, and financial hardship, while also placing the benefits they are receiving through the VA in jeopardy.
Stand with our disabled veterans by signing and sharing this petition.
- Ask our leaders and the VA to stop reevaluating our disabled veterans and to honor their disability assessment. -
Please honor our disabled veterans.
- Actual letter requiring mandatory evaluations.
- Sent to 100s of disabled veterans in Washington state, Feb 2017.
- Testimonial from a deployed US Marine veteran:
"It took me 5 years to get my rating approved. And another year of appeals to get it to 100% and still another year to get paid full rate because they had made a 'clerical error.'
Before my rating approval the VA made me pay out of pocket for treatment and when I couldn't afford to pay they would send me to collections and take my tax return. I have still never been able to collect the money they stole from me during those first 5 years.
Now the VA is using 3rd party call centers to insulate themselves and to set up mandatory appointments to judge whether or not I'm actually disabled."
- US Marine, 1st Anglico, Master Parachutist, Close Combat Instructor, Deployed to Iraq.
Deemed 100% disabled by the VA and currently being "reevaluated" in Washington state.
- Testimonial from a deployed US Army veteran:
"Before my appointment was finished, I had felt like I was raped."
- US Army SPC, Deployed in Iraq. Removed IEDs and struggling with severe PTSD.
Testimonial from a Vietnam veteran:
"The evaluation was humiliating."
- Vietnam War Veteran, endured full physical examination with multiple doctors watching
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