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Veterans Fear Impact of Federal Government Hiring Freeze

NEW YORK, NY (January 24, 2017) – Yesterday, President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order to freeze all federal hiring, exempting military personnel, national security and public safety personnel, but not the Department of Veterans Affairs. The freeze, which was one of Trump’s campaign promises, has alarmed our nation’s veterans. Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), the largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization representing post-9/11 veterans and their families, encourages President Trump to consider the impact of this hiring freeze on veterans and their families and calls on Acting Secretary of the VA Robert Snyder to stand up for veterans.

“Patients, doctors and caregivers across the VA are now worried about the impact of the hiring freeze at this most critical time in the agency’s history ” said Paul Rieckhoff, Founder and CEO of IAVA. “At a moment when the VA should be prioritizing responsiveness and recruiting and hiring the best trained physicians, nurses and mental health counselors in the country, the President has tied the Acting Secretary’s hands.”

“The fact is that, although the military is exempt from the freeze, the VA is not. Over the past day, countless IAVA members have contacted us concerned about the future of their health care,” Rieckhoff continued. “Additionally, about 32% of IAVA’s members are are also government employees and 31% of the federal force are veterans; while some may not be impacted by a freeze, job-seekers waiting to hear about a hiring determination just had their hope dashed.”

IAVA is committed to being a vigilant watch dog to ensure that veterans receive the best care at the VA and the best employment opportunities possible when they return home. To read more about IAVA’s policy agenda, click here.

IAVA is the leading voice of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans in Washington and communities nationwide. Led by veterans, our non-partisan advocacy work ensures that Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families are supported, protected and never forgotten. Since 2004, IAVA has been a juggernaut in Washington, creating and driving the national conversation on issues ranging from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) to women veteran issues to veteran unemployment. IAVA’s dedicated staff in Washington, D.C. leads this work, advocating on behalf of our members daily. We also train our member veterans to be powerful advocates for their local community.

IAVA is focused on results and has delivered historic impacts. Every year since 2007, in an increasingly gridlocked political environment and with an extremely limited operating budget, IAVA has passed at least one major piece of groundbreaking legislation for our community ranging from the Post-9/11 GI Bill (2008), to the VOW to Hire Heroes Act (2011), to The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act (2015).

See IAVA’s Advocacy Program Digital Hub for the full list of victories and to learn more about how you can help.

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.