This post is taken from www.iava.org
Just minutes ago President Trump signed a bill that ended the partial government shutdown on its 35th day. But the damage has already been done. For over a month, members of the Coast Guard, federal employees, government contractors, and their families have been without pay.
The financial and employment stress of a shutdown on the veteran population cannot be understated. Veterans are already a vulnerable population, and this partial government shutdown can cause severe financial hardship for veterans and trigger undo stress on those with mental health injuries — both of which are contributing factors in the suicide epidemic our country faces, especially in regard to veterans who are a higher risk for suicide.
About one-third of federal employees are veterans, and that does not include contractors or veteran families that have been impacted by the shutdown. The veteran community will continue to feel the effects of this partial government shutdown from outstanding bills to the morale and mental health impacts of going without pay for over a month.
We know how damaging a shutdown can be for veterans. It’s why IAVA and leading non-partisan veterans groups fought the shutdown back in 2013 and worked to ensure that VA had systems in place to protect veterans in the event of a future shutdown. Today, because of that advocacy nearly six years ago, VA benefits and healthcare are much less affected.
IAVA will continue to pressure the Administration and Congress to ensure this unnecessary and damaging shutdown never happens again. And if you or your family has been personally impacted by the government shutdown, IAVA has your back; our Rapid Response Referral Program (RRRP) team is at the ready to help you and your family throughout this time.
The nation can breathe a sigh of relief tonight. But our fight doesn’t stop.
This email was sent from Iraq And Afghanistan Veterans Of America, Inc.
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