IAVA'S BIG 6
IAVA’s members have identified 6 priority issues that matter most to them.
IAVA is fighting to modernize government to support today’s veterans.
Up to Speed: Modern VA
WHY IS A MODERN VA IMPORTANT?
Millions of veterans rely on VA for both health care and benefits. Ensuring that the system is able and agile enough to accommodate the millions of veterans who use its services is paramount to ensuring the lasting success and health of the veteran population.
Independent reviews of VA health care support that the care is as good, if not better, than the private sector. A bold approach to ensuring today’s veterans have a system willing to bend and adapt to them will take the full coordination of the executive branch and Congress, along with stakeholder partners in state and local governments, and the private and nonprofit sectors. We need a system that leverages the use of new technologies to streamline processes and enables VA to take a more dynamic approach to respond to the needs of today’s veterans. Even so, the best technology will not save a system if it is built upon outdated structures. VA must connect its internal departments and work with DoD to streamline services.
WHY IS AN OUTMODED VA A PROBLEM?
A government still stuck in the 20th century is trying to meet the demands of today’s new generation of veterans. Despite enormous efforts over the last 10 years, too many veterans are still waiting too long for decisions on their disability claims; at the end of 2014, more than 242,000 veterans were stuck in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) backlog. Roughly 60 percent of new veterans are enrolled in VA care, and those that are often face long wait times for appointments. Others are simply lost in the cracks—between the the Department of Defense (DoD) and the VA, or between state, local, nonprofit and private services.
About 48% of all veterans and about 55% of post-9/11 era veterans are enrolled in VA care. Among IAVA member survey respondents, 84% are enrolled in VA health care, and the vast majority have sought care from VA in the last year. Of these VA users, 86% rated their experience at VA as average or above average. IAVA members have been clear that access to VA care can be challenging, but once in the system, they prefer that care.
How can I help?
How is IAVA fighting?
IAVA is working hard with leaders to make the VA easy for veterans to use, ensure the VA is supported, and improve care for veterans; learn about our current leg below and take action.
Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act (MJIIPA)
Military sexual trauma affects an estimated one in four women veterans and one in one-hundred male veterans, according to VA. While there has been much attention on the issue from the Department of Defense and VA, sexual assault continues to plague the community. The Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act (MJIIPA), is designed to address the systemic fear that survivors of military sexual assault have in deciding whether to report the crimes committed against them.TAKE ACTION
Support the GWOT Memorial Location Act
It is nearly 20 years since the beginning of our Global War on Terrorism. Veterans of these wars and their families have paid a heavy toll over the past two decades, and a Global War on Terrorism Memorial on the National Mall would provide a focal point for veterans, family members, and survivors of these conflicts to heal and reflect.
The Global War on Terror Memorial Location Act (H.R.1115/S.535) would direct that the memorial be built on the National Mall, showing post-9/11 veterans that their service is equally valued by our country.TAKE ACTION
Need help navigating VA?
You are not alone! Take these actions immediately.
As of September 2020, 207,230 claims remain in the VA backlog.
QRF IS HERE FOR YOU
Need Help Navigating VA? IAVA’s QRF is here to help.
MORE ABOUT MODERNIZING VA
Over the past few years, VA has made incredible strides in modernizing its operating systems both internally and externally. The plan currently underway to bridge VA and DoD medical records, replacing a decades-old electronic medical record system, and updating VA.gov to be more interactive and intuitive are among the significant accomplishments that have been in the works for years. A system slowly but surely moving into the 21st century is a win for all veterans.
IAVA's Policy Priorities
Select a topic from the list below to learn about IAVA’s advocacy priorities.