Petition to David Shulkin, Dr. Scott Gottlieb
Urge the VA to Support Research of Medical Marijuana in Treating Veterans with PTSD
PTSD is a severe and potentially debilitating affliction for many veterans. Our country should be doing everything it can to support viable and safe treatment options for PTSD. Yet, incredibly, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) is not actively supporting clinical research studying the potential use of medical cannabis as a treatment option for PTSD, even though preliminary studies have shown promising results. According to their own website, the VA claims they cannot recommend or assist Veterans in using medical marijuana as long as it is classified as a Schedule One Drug by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, the FDA’s own position “supports researchers who conduct adequate and well-controlled clinical trials which may lead to the development of safe and effective marijuana products to treat medical conditions” (https://www.fda.gov/newsevents/publichealthfocus/ucm421163.htm). So, why is the VA not willing to assist and actively support clinical medical marijuana trials? We can find no legitimate answer to this question. There is no group more deserving of access to all helpful medicinal options than Veterans who have bravely served our nation. Because of the lack of treatment options, many Veterans’ rely on opioids to treat their PTSD despite the fact that many negative health impacts are associated with long term use, and in many cases abuse, of opioids. We should be doing everything we can to find viable alternatives to opioids. As an Arizona-based patient-focused organization, AMMA PAC actively works on policies which remove barriers and support full access to medical marijuana for those in need. This includes Veterans with PTSD, who might be one of the biggest beneficiaries of medical marijuana treatment options. But without further study, we may never know. In our home state of Arizona, we have a federally approved study taking place right now, but the VA has not been supportive in referring Veterans to the study. That is a travesty and it needs to be rectified. We are calling on the leaders of the VA and the FDA to work together in resolving this situation and begin proactively supporting legitimate medical marijuana research programs. We hope you will join us in supporting this potentially life-saving cause and sign our petition.
Petition to Donald J. Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, John Cornyn, Rand Paul, U.S. Senate, Bryan Steil, Department of Veterans Affairs
Require the VA to provide service dogs to veterans in need
Our military veterans are heroes. They face struggles that we couldn't imagine, and they do it selflessly to protect our great country. However, their transition home can often be just as difficult because of mental and physical ailments from their service. The waitlist for the VA is far too long to quickly handle the care of every returning veteran, but their medical needs are urgent. Some of these needs can only be treated through direct medical care, but other needs can be met through a service dog. Service dogs can be trained to care for people with PTSD, visual impairments, hearing impairments, mobility impairments, and many other conditions. Furthermore, these dogs can ensure that the veteran is never alone while dealing with these conditions. Currently, the VA offers service dogs to those with hearing/sight loss and mobility impairments. However, they do not offer dogs to veterans with psychological issues, such as PTSD. I am advocating that, as part of the VA Compensation and Pension (C&P) evaluation process, the VA offer dogs to all veterans diagnosed with psychological or physical conditions. This small step would make a massive difference in the lives of these men and women. They've given everything for us. Let's give back to them.
Petition to Department of Veterans Affairs, David shulkin
A spouse to be able to call for immediate help for PTSD from the VA for their partner.
The Department of Veterans affairs tells people that when someone needs help they have to call themselves. Sometimes the veteran that needs the help is not capable of making that phone call anymore because they are so out of control with the post traumatic stress disorder that they can not function. I am trying to get them to understand that a spouse or family member knows when something is not right and when an emergency counseling session is needed. When someone else calls they are told when the earliest appointment is and most of the time it is at least 3 weeks out. Sometimes that just to long and that adds to the 22 veterans a day that commit suicide. I think by fixing this we may be able to lower that number in the future. Thank you in advance for signing and helping make a difference.
Petition to Gus M. Bilirakis, Neal P. Dunn, John H. Rutherford
Allow military veterans who've served in combat to receive full coverage under GI-Bill.
Reservist and guard veterans are not treated as full-fledged "veterans" in the writing of the current GI-Bill. They are seen as "less than deserving". The current GI-Bill (Post 9/11) is a great tool for military members and veterans alike. It allows opportunities for aspiring students who otherwise would be unable to afford tuition at certain institutions...but it has a major flaw: Reservists & National Guard members are considered "sub-veteran" in the eyes of the VA. The VA allows for 100% coverage through their Post 9/11 GI-Bill program only to those who have completed 36 months of "active duty time" ('active duty time' is considered simply as time-in-service in the 'active military' or times at which reservists are 'activated') or who were discharged due to service-connected disability. This leaves countless veterans who have fought and bled for this country to receive less than their fair share. For example, a reservist Combat Engineer who is part of a Route Clearance Package and deploys to a theater of operations to search for roadside bombs will have to be deployed four times (under the current Army deployment model of nine months) to be eligible for 100% coverage. That means the three deployments that he or she went through, the detonations under their feet, the tears & the fear, the smoke & the blood are not satisfactory enough to be considered a full "veteran". I will never, in any way, try and discredit anyone else's military service, but there are countless members of the active-duty military community who have never deployed to a theater of operations. Who have never held a weapon outside of Basic Training. Who have never felt the fear that their lives were about to end. But if those members served 36 months while on active duty, they are seen as more of a veteran than a combat-arms service member who has, but has yet to reach 36 months of active duty time. Reservists and National Guard members take up a substantial role in today's ever-changing, asymmetrical battlefield. They've left careers, families, friends, belongings, and made the same sacrifices as active members. To solve this blatant imbalance, I propose: "Keep the current Post 9/11 perimeters in place. The only change being if a military member serves overseas, and qualifies for Imminent Danger Pay/Hostile Fire Pay for a combined total of 180 days, regardless of the specific theater or their current active/reserve status, that member will be entitled to the full 100% benefit coverage." The current writing of the GI-Bill not only leaves out Reservists & Guardsman who've fought in foreign wars, but also active duty personnel who've done the same, but served less than 36 month contracts. This will allow members who have fought for this country, with sweat beading down their Kevlars and the taste of sulfur in their mouths after an IED detonation, to come home to their deserved hero's welcome and not be treated as any less of a veteran. Current GI-Bill Benefits
Petition to Donald J. Trump, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, Johnny Isakson, President of the United States, California State Senate, California State House, Jackie Speier, Barbara Lee, Mike Thompson
Stop the VA from Retaliating against Veteran Whistleblower Jamie Fox
Since coming forward in 2008, as a witness for a former co-worker who was being harassed — in order to help her stop the harassment — I have been continuously harassed, punished, and retaliated against by the same people who protected the perpetrator at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Veterans Benefit Administration (VBA), Oakland VA Regional Office (Oakland VARO). The Oakland VARO has been allowed to terrorize me and my family without consequences and they have not been stopped. The VA used the Office of Whistleblower and Accountability Act (VA OAWP) and the FBI to try to silence me. The VA refuses to conduct a formal investigation into the malfeasance committed by the Oakland VARO. I was told by OAWP the week before the FBI showed up at my home, to make me take down my internet posts, that I would not get a formal investigation, I would never know who accessed my private records (which is my legal right via FOIA), and I would never know the results of OAWP’s “informal investigation.” I also learned that the same people who I reported were illegally accessing my private information were tasked with investigating themselves!! Since July 2017 I have been trying to get help from many people including VA leadership, OSC, OIG, OAWP, senators, U.S. Representatives, privacy officers, non-profit veterans groups and more. I even flew to Washington DC in July/August 2018 to walk the halls of the senate and visit other offices to help me. I have also contacted the White House VA liaison Jake Leinenkrugal in July 2017 and July 2018 (I received a response with help from both emails in that he forwarded my email to OAWP). However no one has been able to stop my former managers and co-workers from harassing me. I recently received another letter from the VA with more bogus claims. I started on-line petitions and a website in order to reach more people so they would sign my petition. However, even when paying for advertisement through the major platforms I was being shadow banned. I spent thousands of dollars trying to get my message of help out. The harder I tried, the more creative I got. I started to create a comic book that would bring attention to veteran’s issues, and I was working with various artists. The FBI claimed the memes I released as teasers to the comic book made me “dangerous” and claimed that my former coworkers at the Oakland VARO were too afraid to go to work for fear I was going to storm the Oakland federal building with guns blazing. I have NEVER owned a gun and I NEVER made any threats to anyone. The only thing these people are afraid of is accountability for their illegal and unethical behavior. My dad, who is also a veteran, has become collateral damage to the retaliation directed at me. It wasn’t enough that Oakland VARO had to target me, they went after my family. The VA has not removed the people overseeing my dad’s fiduciary program, who allowed his former VA payee to mismanage his money and sell his home with his belongings still in it, and continue to refuse to help my dad and the local district attorney. Because of the VA, my dad has lost a lot, including his home and many of his belongings. His former VA payee (a family member) could potentially get a felony for something the VA authorized this person to do, and the so-called FBI claimed I am a domestic terrorist based on lies, and both agencies are refusing to release these so-called FBI agents’ names, the VA Criminal Investigator lied to local police claiming I am a danger to my patients and coworkers thus forbidding me to go on any VA facility while their fake criminal investigation of me ensues. When I came forward that day in 2008, I thought there were laws that protected me. I utterly had no idea that such a simple gesture, like caring for the dignity of another human-being, would have such severe and far reaching negative consequences. What is and has been happening to me is unethical and illegal. Not only is it a breach of privacy, but it is also a breach of trust. It is a disgrace when the very people who defend the rights of the American people do not have those same rights at the VA, particularly the right to have our private information protected from the people who we do not want to access our private information. As a veteran using the VA system, I recently discovered that I have absolutely no control over my private and protected information, and that VA managers have carte blanche to everything with impunity! Anyone who has access to the Veterans Benefits Management System (VBMS) with a few strokes of the keyboard can view over 30 years of information about me, from anywhere in the country, including from someone’s living room. No person, not even a government official, should have that much access to so much information about a person’s past and present life history, especially VA employees who are known to be unscrupulous. No manager or former manager or co-worker should have access to so much information about their employees or co-workers, especially the people who are responsible for forcing my resignation and who I testified against for protecting the man who I witnessed harassing a co-worker. What I say to my doctor is no one else’s business unless they absolutely have to view the information and were authorized to view the information. It is my right to see who has accessed my private information and it is my right to restrict who sees my information. It is incomprehensible to think the VBA failed to build in safeguards in its highly touted computer program, which was allegedly designed to make processing veterans’ claims more efficient, but cannot restrict certain VBMS users from accessing specific claim files, except through antiquated security system that was designed to control paper files. This antiquated security system allowed and continues to allow people, like my former managers and co-workers, access to my protected information. It also allows managers and employees to snoop on current VA veteran employees and co-workers. I, and many other veterans and whistleblowers, would like to know what exactly is VA’s threshold for meeting the requirements to initiate a “formal investigation”? The only investigations that matter and carry any weight are FORMAL INVESTIGATIONS. I have been trying to get a formal investigation into my reports of malfeasance committed by the Oakland VARO for months, but I have only been met with opposition. Obviously the VA is hiding something much bigger than my case, which is not isolated. VA managers across the nation have been illegally accessing the files of thousands of VA Veteran employees. Please help me (and other VA veteran whistleblowers) with initiating a full and complete formal investigation, make OAWP release their “informal investigation” reports, and stop these egregious retaliatory practices by upper VA management. Thank you, Jamie Fox, USN veteran please also read: Mike Volpe, Investigative Journalist, article: "VA Whistleblower Visited By FBI, Sent To Psych Ward, Set To Be Terminated From Job" on The Daily Caller https://dailycaller.com/2018/12/14/veterans-affairs-whistleblower-fbi-visited-fired/ Benjamin Krause, article: "VA Whistleblower Locked-Up Over Matrix Memes, FBI Denies First Amendment" on "Disabled Veterans.org" https://www.disabledveterans.org/2018/12/15/va-whistleblower-harassed-over-matrix-memes-fbi-denies-1st-amendment/ My statement submitted to Congress found at: https://heartlesshypocrisy.com/10-thank-woa-helping-make-voice-heard/ "Thank you WoA for Helping Make My Voice Heard"
Petition to Donald J. Trump, Chris Stewart, Mitt Romney, Ben McAdams, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense, Kirsten E. Gillibrand, President of the United States, John R. Curtis, Martha McSally
Allow US service members/victims of military sexual trauma to qualify for VA home loans.
Veterans who report experiencing sexual trauma while in the military have more than twice the rate of postdeployment homelessness than their counterparts who have not experienced such trauma, with the risk higher in men, new research shows. The current DOD and department of Veterans Affairs rules only allow for a national guardsman to be eligible for a VA home loan if they have 6 years of service or 2 combat tours. Regardless of service connected disabilities! The following are the proposed amendments to the VA home loan eligibility requirements.*Veterans shall be granted eligibility for a va home loan. regardless of branch of service under the following conditions and rules. :for a veteran to receive eligibility under the new preposed amendment the veteran must meet 2 or more of the following qualifications.* A veteran who has been involved in a military sexual assault that happened while in service. * Has service connected disabilities with a combined rating of 60% or higher or 50% on a single disability.*A veteran is found individually unemployable by the department of Veterans Affairs.*A veteran who has had their dd214 upgraded to a full honorable discharge by the Army review board and states under Secretarial Authority regardless of time of in service. I started this petition because...I am a disabled army Vet I am 70% permanent and totally disabled through the department of Veterans Affairs.Several weeks into my basic training at Ft Leonardwood I was physically and sexually assaulted while showering in the barracks.The assault was unreported at the time as most are due to fear of retaliation and it being covered up or brushed off as a boys will be boys. I endured 11 more months of basic training until the US Army discharged me with a general under honorable conditions discharge. It wasn't until 5 years after my discharge that I was finally hooked up with the department of Veterans Affairs. At which point I finally broke the silence on what really happened to me and the reason I was admitted to the base hospital for 14 days. Being service connected for military sexual trama is not a easy process. It's hell. You not only have to write out your assault to apply for benifits. You're also required to participate in an interview process with up to 6 psychologist this interview is done in a group with others who are survivors of MST as well the hardest part is for the first time you have to speak about your assault in a group although you're among other veteran this happened to it's hell and even before they start the interview with the group they require that you have someone who's going to watch over you or check in with you after the interview as the process of bearing all that happened could cause a veteran to commit suicide. Over a 3 year period I went from a 30% rating to a 70% rating and after I was awarded permanent and total and found to be individually unemployable. I reached out to my local congresswoman and they helped me navigate and apply for my discharge to be upgraded by the Army review board. The Army review board upgraded my discharge to a full honorable discharge under Secretarial Authority. The only reason that this was granted is because I sent in the medical records from my 14 day hospital and all my treatment and medical records from the Department of Veterans Affairs.Although all my DOD records have been updated I am still ineligible for a VA home loan. So regardless of my rating of 70% being permanent and total and is made up of several service connected disabilities which make me individually unemployable. I have to spend half my benifits to pay rent because my career was cut short because of a situation out of my control.This needs to change! Sign below
Petition to Andrew M. Cuomo, California Governor, Marco Rubio, Johnny Isakson, Donald J. Trump, Georgia Governor, Alabama Governor, Illinois Governor, Arizona Governor, FOX News, New Jersey Governor, CNN, CBS, ABC, Department of Veterans Affairs, United States Department of Health and Human Services, North Carolina Governor, South Carolina Governor, Texas State House, Texas Governor, Tennessee Governor, Virginia Governor, Louisiana Governor, Nevada Governor, Oregon Governor, Washington Post, Larry Hogan, New York Times, Mitt Romney, Utah Governor, Rick Snyder, Medtronic
Stop Medicare from taking away the VenaSeal procedure for Veterans and Seniors.
Medicare contractors Novitas and PalmettoGBA have recently quit covering the VenaSeal vein treatment procedure without scientific data to support the decision. VenaSeal uses Cyanoacrylate (medical adhesive) to close superficial veins. The treatment is nonthermal, involves one incision and is highly effective, especially in the elderly and heavyweight patient as they have a hard time wearing support hose. Palmetto supports says that the procedure is promising and uses 3 month data. VenaSeal (previously Sapheon) has been around for over 7 years and Medtronic has 3 year published data and is soon to release 5 year data. The data shows that the VenaSeal procedure has a long term closure rate of 94% vs. the gold standard of 91.9%. (Radio-frequency ablation). Our legislature and representatives need to ask the MAC’s (Medicare Administrative Contractors). Our veterans and senior Americans deserve the best medicine. Medicare and it’s contractors need to immediately add VenaSeal back to the LCD and allow patients and physicians a choice in how they have their veins treated. The clinical data and long term results (over 7 years of data) are similar to radio-frequency ablation. I started this petition because...I am a vascular consultant and partner in a vein practice in Atlanta Georgia. As one of the first adopters of the VenaSeal technology, I have seen first hand the advantages this technology provides. We are selective in who we treat with VenaSeal and have had (Zero) significant complications. Every now and then a patient has to take a steroid for 5 days if they are sensitive to the adhesive. Cyanoacrylate has been used in surgery for over 30 years! We screen our patients for any adverse reactions to tapes, glues or adhesives of any kind. If in doubt we don’t use the technology. VenaSeal is a real game changer for patients with little mobility, significant arthritis, venous ulcers, are elderly or larger body mass. Last Friday we had a patient walk in with an ulcer on his leg. We were able to treat him that afternoon and today he was over the moon as his entire leg was smaller, the color had changed and his ulcer had already started to heal. The scientific evidence for VenaSeal is great. It has been FDA approved for 3 years and used in Europe for 7 years. With all medical technologies, there have been some side effects from those allergic, however, this is very limited. The risk of this type of reaction is 1:10,000. Here is the Waves Study. Cyanoacrylate closure of incompetent great, small and accessory saphenous veins without the use of post-procedure compression: Initial outcomes of a post-market evaluation of the VenaSeal System (the WAVES Study)Kathleen Gibson, Brian FerrisFirst Published May 20, 2016 Research Article https://doi.org/10.1177/1708538116651014Article Information PDF download for Cyanoacrylate closure of incompetent great, small and accessory saphenous veins without the use of post-procedure compression: Initial outcomes of a post-market evaluation of the VenaSeal System (the WAVES Study) Here are the MAC’s Palmetto GBA - www.palmettogba.com/medicare Medicare - www.cgsmedicare.com Novitas Solutions - www.novitas-solutions.com Look at the three-year clinical data! https://www.trufflesveinspecialists.com/vein-treatments/venaseal/
Petition to United States Supreme Court, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Mississippi State Senate, President of the United States, U.S. Senate
Veteran Dies at VA Psychiatric ICU of a Overdose while on suicide watch. DEMAND ANSWERS!!!
Marine Corps veteran Hank Brandon Lee was found unresponsive in the day room of a Veterans Affiars PICU and was later pronounced dead at Good Samaritan Medical Center on March 4 2017. He had overdosed on fentanyl, a powerful synthetic painkiller, according to his death certificate. How did the Mississippi Marine Corps veteran obtain and overdose on the drug under the VA’s watch? On March 4, VA records show, Lee had been under observation, with checks every 15 minutes, while on lock down. He had been in VA inpatient care for a few months. He was reportedly “fine” on his final check, but was found unresponsive and “slumped over, ashy in color” in the day room by hospital staff about 5:30 p.m. A year later and still no answers as to why or how this happened. His widow,children,family,friends and veterans alike deserve answers and it needs to never happen again!! Demand Answers!!!! Support a congressional inquiry!!! THANK YOU