Military senior leaders continue to fail our service members when it comes to ensuring their mental, physical, and spiritual health is taken care of due to combat and training injuries. The same can be said for the Department of Veterans Affairs and all federal departments that have anything to do with the post-service welfare of our service members and their families. The U.S. Congress in both houses and on both sides of the aisle are also negligent in ensuring that the federal departments do their job efficiently and effectively for our veterans. Less than 18% of Congress has military service of some type. The Secretary of the VA is not a veteran. He loses credibility with veterans because he is not a veteran. Veterans have grown weary of elected officials and political appointee non-veterans, thinking they know what veterans and their families need.      


The lack of oversight at the senior levels and the ineffective bureaucracies have created a situation that has negatively impacted the health of our service members, veterans, and their families. Those working at the lower levels of the bureaucracies do their best to help our service members, veterans, and their families. The fault lies in the senior levels due to political, bureaucratic, and organizational ineffectiveness.


The promise to our service members, veterans, and their families have not been met since the inception of veteran affairs. Nearly every member of Congress, the President, and senior federal leaders have as their platform the care of our service members, veterans, and their families. So, why are we having substantial problems with healthcare transition, suicide rates, homelessness, jobless rates, and incarceration?


The establishment of the Veterans Administration came in 1930 when Congress authorized the President to “consolidate and coordinate Government activities affecting war veterans.” The three component agencies became bureaus within the Veterans Administration. In 1988 the Veterans Administration became the Department of Veterans Affairs. President Ronald Reagan elevated the VA to a Cabinet-level executive department on October 15, 1988.