Veterans organizations comment on halt to VA’s Asset and Infrastructure Review process

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WASHINGTON, D.C. —  The Independent Budget Veterans Service Organizations (IBVSOs)—DAV (Disabled American Veterans), Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), and VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars)—supported the VA MISSION Act of 2018, which established the Asset and Infrastructure Review (AIR) process, including an independent AIR Commission. We recognize the critical importance of VA’s infrastructure in ensuring veterans receive needed care and believe it has been underprioritized for years.

Over the past several years, we have testified numerous times about our concerns with the AIR process, particularly VA’s market assessments, and the need for rigorous oversight. In order for it to succeed, there needed to be complete buy-in and full transparency among all stakeholders. This did not happen.

The announcement that the AIR Commission will not move forward as intended is disheartening but not unexpected. The process was flawed from the beginning, in part due to a global pandemic, and did not have the necessary support from Congress or the Administration. For these reasons, and others, the IBVSOs believe the best course of action is to stand down the process rather than proceed with a half-measured attempt at a major overhaul of VA’s infrastructure.

While the AIR process appears over, it shined much-needed light on the urgent need to prioritize VA facilities. This reenergized conversation cannot be allowed to crumble apart, like too many of the VA buildings this Commission was meant to address.

 

 

About DAV:
DAV empowers veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity. It is dedicated to a single purpose: fulfilling our promises to the men and women who served. DAV does this by ensuring that veterans and their families can access the full range of benefits available to them; fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; providing employment resources to veterans and their families and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life. DAV, a non-profit organization with more than 1 million members, was founded in 1920 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1932. Learn more at DAV.org.

About the VFW:
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is the nation’s largest and oldest major war veterans organization. Founded in 1899, the congressionally-chartered VFW is comprised entirely of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, Guard and Reserve forces. With 1.6 million VFW and Auxiliary members located in more than 6,200 Posts worldwide, the nonprofit veterans service organization is proud to proclaim “NO ONE DOES MORE FOR VETERANS” than the VFW, which is dedicated to veterans’ service, legislative advocacy, and military and community service programs. For more information or to join, visit our website at VFW.org.

 About Paralyzed Veterans of America:
Paralyzed Veterans of America is the only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated solely to the benefit and representation of veterans with spinal cord injury or disease. For more than 70 years, the organization has ensured that veterans receive the benefits earned through service to our nation; monitored their care in VA spinal cord injury units; and funded research and education in the search for a cure and improved care for individuals with paralysis. With more than 70 offices and 33 chapters, Paralyzed Veterans of America serves veterans, their families and their caregivers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Learn more at PVA.org