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IAVA to de Blasio: The State of the City Must be Stronger for Vets

Post-9/11 vets offer mayor support to establish adequate funding for new department

NEW YORK (February 4, 2016) — Today, in advance of Mayor de Blasio’s State of the City address, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) — the only national veterans organization headquartered in New York City — called on the mayor to fulfill his promises to the city’s veterans by adequately funding the city’s new Department of Veterans’ Services.

“After examination of the mayor’s Preliminary Budget for Fiscal Year 2017 released Jan. 21, 2016, we were disappointed to find that proposed funding to support New York City’s veterans saw only a slight increase from $263,392 in FY2016 to $274,194 in FY2017,” said Paul Rieckhoff, Founder and CEO of IAVA. “The mayor says he supports veterans and is turning a new page after a difficult last year. But in this preliminary budget he completely fails to put his money where his mouth is. This ridiculously small proposed increase is an insult to over 225,000 veterans across NYC. We’re shocked and disappointed and hope the city council will have the commons sense to correct this situation immediately.”

IAVA, which led the fight for passage of the law to establish the new department, previously called for it to be funded at $100 million annually, and again calls on the mayor to allocate this level of funding appropriate to serve the city’s veterans.

For more information about IAVA’s work on behalf of New York City area veterans see iava.org/nycvets.

Note to media: Email press@iava.org or call 212-982-9699 to speak with IAVA CEO and Founder Paul Rieckhoff or IAVA leadership.

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (www.IAVA.org) is the leading post-9/11 veteran empowerment organization (VEO) with the most diverse and rapidly growing membership in America. As a non-profit founded in 2004, IAVA’s mission is to connect, unite and empower post-9/11 veterans. Celebrating its 12th year anniversary, IAVA has connected more than 1.2 million veterans with resources and community, and provided more than 7,300 veterans with personalized support from IAVA’s Master’s level social workers.