Our veterans deserve better

Our warriors defend our country, they go overseas and fight our enemies, they risk life and limb and would willingly give their lives for every one of us. They also respond to and help in times of emergency here at home, they have helped with security and clean up during storms such as Katrina and Sandy, they are also helping fight the wildfires in Arizona right now. Yet when they call upon the same government they so selflessly serve, to get benefits they have earned through their blood sweat and tears, it is like hitting a brick wall.
Our veterans applying for disability benefits with the VA face filing over 600 forms with 18 different federal agencies to get the benefits they earned by fighting and sacrificing for our country. ( http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/07/02/study-finds-veterans-applying-for-benefits-face-as-many-as-613-forms-across-18/?test=latestnews). As a medically retired veteran I can attest to the truth of this claim, I went through a Medical Evaluation Board to determine if I was medically able to continue my service, I was ruled medically unable to serve, this put me in the process to gain my VA disability benefits the day I retired so I would start receiving my benefits right away. The process to get my claim approved, while working with VA representatives located at my post, Fort Drum NY, was supposed to take 6 months, the VA Rep I was assigned handled my case personally, and it still took over a year for me to her my proposed rating, not my official rating, and it took 4 months after I received my proposed rating to actually receive my permanent rating and start receiving my benefits.
There are currently almost 900,000 veterans waging for their disability claims to be processed, there are 250,000 claims under appeal, and the problem seems to be a lack of accuracy in rating the veteran’s disability claim not a lack of man power. ( http://usmedicine.com/articles/va-claims-backlog-also-caused-by-high-error-rate-not-only-processing-speed.html#.UdMhVR0tGcg). The VA was warned by a former VA employee, Paul Sullivan, in 2003 that there would be a surge in disability claims and that they needed to prepare for it then, but the VA higher ups ignored this advice and now they are paying the price at the expense of the veterans. The Center for Investigative Reporting shows the average wait time for a disability claim appeal to be resolved is 279 days, while first time claims average 318 days.
This is unacceptable, these veterans were wounded in service to our country, and to make them wait almost a year to get their benefits is atrocious, these men and women did not tell our government to wait almost a year before they sacrificed for us, for our government to to it to them is unconscionable. We need to end this backlog of calims and get our veterans their benefits now.
We owe it to every veteran to ensure they get what they have earned, we can not let 9ur president sweep this under the rug like so many other problems he does not want to deal with. They sacrificed for us, we need to show them it was not in vain.

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