Legislative Director Sean Ferritor (right) continues to work Capitol Hill during recess delivering a letter of support to Congressman Chris Collins’ staff for legislation aiding homeless veterans.
The U.S. Veterans Hospice Committee recently delivered letters of support for two critical pieces of legislation in the 113th Congress. Congressman Chris Collins recently introduced H.R. 4725, The Care for Our Heroes Act, and Congresswoman Julia Brownley introduced H.R. 4674, the Guarantee Housing for Terminally Ill Veterans Act.
“There are thousands of bills introduced in every session of Congress,” states Legislative Director Sean Ferritor. “The key is to have the support of our membership, so that our legislative team can identify the most important pieces of legislation that can help homeless veterans with terminal illnesses. Both Congressman Collins and Congresswoman
Brownley are staunch supporters of our military and veterans. Thanks to our members and supporters we now have a direct line of communication with both Representatives to try and amend their bills in the 114th Congress to directly address terminally ill homeless veterans,” concluded Ferritor.
Thanks to your steadfast support, the U.S. Veterans Hospice Committee has been branching out to members on both sides of the aisle to try and use whatever legislation or language necessary to finally connect the dots and create a VA-funded network of hospice facilities dedicated solely to terminally ill homeless veterans.
Homeless and dying veterans live on the very edge of society. Most people don’t think about them. They don’t have lobbyists; they don’t have family structures to pick them up when they are down. The simply live on the streets, afflicted with diseases such as Alzheimers, AIDS, or a myriad of chronic illnesses. Together, you and I can change that narrative.
You can help by putting pressure on Congress to finally connect the dots and create a network of hospice facilities for homeless veterans with terminal diseases. Your 2014 “Help Dying Veterans” petition will be in your mailbox in early September and it is imperative that you sign your petition and rush it back to the Committee in a timely manner.
These honorable veterans deserve a dignified way to spend their final hours, rather than dying scared and alone on the streets of this great country. We owe it to them. It’s our duty. Your 2014 “Help Dying Veterans” petition will be in your mailbox soon. Don’t let our American heroes down.
On April 9, The U.S. Veterans Hospice Committee attended a hearing titled “A Continued Assessment of Delays in VA Medical Care and Preventable Veterans Deaths.” The hearing was held by Congressman Jeff Miller, Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, and explored delays in veteran care at VA hospitals, as well as ways to stop preventable deaths.
Barry Coates, a retired military veteran and proud American testified at the hearing regarding a case that unfortunately is becoming all too familiar within the VA. “Mr. Coates was misdiagnosed for over a year and a half,” stated Executive Director Gerald Johnson
Homeless veterans are targeted by criminals and thugs. They are beaten and robbed. John D'Amico, a homeless army veteran, was attacked and severely beaten by a group of teenagers who claimed they simply, "had nothing better to do."
"It is a national disgrace," says Executive Di-rector Gerald Johnson, "that our homeless veterans endure this violence on a regular basis. It is especially tragic that our terminally-ill homeless veterans must constantly live in fear while dealing with the difficulties of their ailment and homelessness."
With our loyal supporters backing them up, our USV's Executive Director, Sgt. Gerald Johnson, USAF (Ret.), and the legislative team will soon meet with the staff of Congressman Walter Jones. "Our hope is to convince Congressman Jones, an ardent supporter and friend of our veterans, that Congress needs to act immediately and expedite the establishment of a National Veterans Hospice Network," explains Assistant Director Owen Thomas.
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