One thing has become abundantly clear after listening to what this panel had to say. We know what the major issues are that face our transitioning service members and our current veterans: Unemployment, homelessness, women's issues, PTSD and TBI, timely care for our veterans, substantially more efficient claims processes. I could keep on going, but those are the major issues. When I was listening to everyone talk and listening to the concerns raised by others during the Q&A, I also discovered a larger and more disturbing issue that is impeding everyone's endeavors to render aid: overdeveloped and cumbersome government bureaucracy. Time and time again, it was brought to everyone's attention that the bureaucracy at the VA is causing most of these issues. I would contend that it is government bureaucracy as a whole that is the problem. The VA is run by an even bigger bureaucracy - Congress and it's army of administrators, chiefs of staff, assistants, office clerks...
Yes, we've identified the problem. Now it's time to do something about it. Find ways to facilitate private and public organizational hand shakes so that we can all become part of a network of support, working toward a common goal. Even if it takes time to make this happen, the process needs to start now. In the interim, we have a year until the next panel discussion and I am throwing down the gauntlet:
The Volunteers of America and ReMIND illustrate how cooperation leads to results. Let's continue to focus on solutions and cooperation. Thank you for being organizations of rare vision and action. Please let me know what I can do to further advocacy over the course of the coming year!
As I continue my life with PTSD, I will share my challenges and discoveries on this blog.