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New York, NY (November 29, 2016) – Today, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) sent a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi urging them to appoint veterans to lead the House Committee on Veterans Affairs for the 115th Congress. Currently, the percentage of Members of Congress who have served in the military is only 20%, down from a peak of more than 70% in the House and Senate in 1971. Veteran leadership of the Committee on Veterans Affairs will help ensure that those who have served get an opportunity to prioritize the veterans issues that are put before the rest of Congress.

Full text of the letter can be found below and here.

For more information on specific policy recommendations for the President, Congress and all elected officials, please see the IAVA Policy Agenda.

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 the full list of victories and to learn more about how you can help.

In early June, IAVA unveiled a “Marshall Plan” for veterans: eight steps the Obama Administration and Congress can take now to restore confidence in the VA. Among the steps are recommendations from IAVA’s 2014 Policy Agenda. IAVA urges Congress and the President to enact all of the recommendations from the plan.

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