Local disabled veterans lead a multi-state delegation to Congress on 21 April to fight for a VA benefit designed for “the most severely disabled veterans” that has become VA’s best kept secret, the Independent Living Program. Disabled veterans Kraig Gates (Savannah), Bruce McCartney (Midway), and Donald Singleton (Richmond Hill) coordinated the meetings held with Congressman John Barrow (Ga) , Congressman Jack Kingston(Ga), Congressman John Boozman (Ar), Congressman Kevin Brady (Tx), Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin (SD), Sen Johnny Isakson, their staffs and staff of the House and SenateVeterans Affairs Committee.
Disabled veterans from D.C., Indiana, and Texas joined the local vets in lobbying Congress on behalf of disabled veterans nationwide.
Worrisome for the local patriots is the actions of the VA in denying eligible veterans this benefit, and in some cases even denying its existence.
The briefings presented by the group raised many eyebrows and concerns with the Members of Congress who immediately directed investigations of the problems. They also presented details of a Pilot Program they developed that will assist in fixing this ‘Broken System’.
If accepted the Pilot Program will be conducted in Georgia in the 1st and 12th Congressional Districts easing the pain and burdens of the approximately 2600 severely disabled veterans in those Districts.