A Legacy of Service, Hope for the Future

DAV (Disabled American Veterans) is the most long-lasting veterans advocacy and assistance group in this country. We’ve watched this country change and grow, and we’ve grown along with it. However, DAV has never wavered in its core mission to fulfill our country’s promises to the men and women who served. We invite everyone, veterans and civilian, men and women, young and old, to join us as we stand up for those veterans who risked it all when they stood up for us, our country, and our ideals.

J. Marc Burgess, National Adjutant

Renewing our focus

After the excitement of the Mid-Winter Conference and pushing on toward this year’s National Convention, I now want to draw your focus to our two major initiatives for the year. It’s clear from listening to our  members that issues concerning caregivers and women veterans are top priorities.

As veteran populations age and as more service members return home from war with injuries and illnesses  requiring care, the family members and caregivers who provide support become increasingly important to our community.

Caregivers save the VA and American taxpayers millions of dollars each year, and they allow veterans to live at home rather than in institutions. Their health and well-being are of critical importance, and we must safeguard them.

Congress has numerous legislative options on the table that would ensure the recognition and support of caregivers of all severely ill and injured veterans and service members, including eliminating the inequality of eligibility for VA’s Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers. These are avenues DAV will continue to promote and work to advance through Congress.

Care for women veterans, as has been thoroughly detailed in our recent report “Women Veterans: The Long Journey Home,” has lagged behind the times for many years. The demand for gender-specific services and care is severely outpaced by the growing population of women veterans, and this is a problem that must be remedied.

Over the past several years, we have been witness to a VA health care system with high demand on limited resources, and we know that is not the way to operate. However, we also know the VA offers a unique and specialized service to veterans, and we should look first to ways we can fix the long-term investments we have made in a system designed to serve veterans. Our report on women veterans offers such recommendations.

Change, as we know, is often slow. But we must continue chipping away and working to solve these issues, not just for caregivers or  women veterans, but to create a better system for us all.

If you want to find out more about the National Adjutant, you can find his biography here.