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veteran neglect at VA CLC


john47

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Hi

I'm a Vietnam veteran .I began advocating for other veterans in 2011 since my PD diagnosis..Last three years after I reported gross  neglect at my facility I lost my volunteership.Thats the way this VA and many operate today. Their are laws protecting whistleblowers but the VA must be above the law here.I

Ive gone to just above every goverment rep.or board,VAIG,whitehouse hotline,etc,, and cam e up empty. Even the veteran groupsAL,DAV,VFW werent interested. If you cant watch over disabled  vets living in these homes you should say your a veteran agency.

It seems the VA mission to do its best with the vets seems to be misplaced. Here its all above the administration and their friends. The veterans are pawns.

A lot of what has happened here lately falls on the Trump years. Before that while things weren't perfect I wouldn't have been forced to speak out

I havnt been the only one to complain here but where can you find a veteran champion?

Where are the veterans who should be outraged 

Talking and writing dont get it done ,we need action

Or the VA will remain a agency for administrators not for veterans

Happy New Year

john

 

 

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Hi John,

This is a tough issue. A lot of things are wrong at the VA, and most of us, like you, come to realize that there is little if anything that we can do to change it. They say the squeaky wheel gets the grease, but what can we do if they just take away the whole wheel? Just like they gave you the boot, it is a protectionist environment and has been for generations. The end result is that deep corruption can exist as you say. The best thing is detailed complaints going out to everyone like you appear to have done, but even then even congress critters are afraid to take it on. 

I have no answers, but I do understand what you are relaying here.

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Similar stuff has happened at VA for decades.  Last night, I dreamt a homeless Veteran was elected president of the USA.  

I dont know if my dream will continue, but if it does, I may post what a homeless Vet thinks is the solution to the homeless Vet solution problem.  

I was a homeless Vet, but just for a short time.  I applied for benefits in 2002, after struggling with issues many years earlier.  

I finally got (some benefits, 40 percent) in 2004, but it was too little to late and I lost my home to foreclosure anyway.  I blamed VA, for delays..had I actually gotten my benefits in the later part of 2002, like my VSO told me I would, I wouldnt have lost my home.  

At least a part of it was poor communication on VA's part.  I told my VSO I had no income and was about to become homeless..I also told my doctor the same.  

Only almost 4 years later, my doc said "I should apply for VA pension" while waiting on VA compensation.  Well, later I learned "this should have been automatic", because I had no income, and was a Vietnam era Veteran during a period that rendered me eligible for pension.  Regulations say an application for pension is an application for comp, and vice verca.  

     While my VSO could/should have applied for pension for me, each rater that looked at my file should have done likewise.  ONLY after I filed AGAIN for pension, did they adjuticate, and award pension.  I had no idea if/what the difference between pension and compensation were.  I guess I thought "pension" meant I had retired fromt he miltiary and should get a pension.  

    I slipped through the cracks, lost my home, as many other Vets have...and it did not need to happen.  Nor do many of the others.  

    Its my opinion that the VA actually got better during the Trump Era.  First, a white house hotline was initiaited, where Vets could call the white house, if people at the VA couldnt/wouldnt solve the problem.  I wonder why that never happened earlier?  

   Also, the VCAA was passed and implemented in 2019.  While there is still disagreement among Vets advocates whether or not it actually helped Vets, I think it has in at least 2 ways.

    Prior to VCAA, the VARO was required to send a SOC AND additional SSOC's whenever the Veteran filed a NOD or submitted new evidence on his NOD.  The SSOC/SOC were pretty much useless "except", when the VA failed to file one, the lawyers could argue the VA did not comply with the law and file the applicable SOC.  

     But the even better improvement, was eliminating the time burning "Certification (by the VARO) to the BVA".  VA admitted that certification should take 30 minutes, but VA often dragged their feet and certification to the board often took a year or more..while the Veteran helplessly waited on some Veteran specialist to file a letter to the board saying your appeal is "certified".  For what?   For nothing.  After VCAA, that extra year average that it took VARO to certify the claim was eliminated.  

    For me, getting my benefits a year earlier would have prevented foreclosure.  So, VCAA, implemented in Feb. 2019, came too late.  

    I did notice that Veterans were allowed to remain in the "legacy" system, should they so elect.  On hadit, the very slowest moving, and most frustrating claims are almost always in the legacy system.  (Those legacy claims still require SOC's/SSOC's, and certification to the board, because the Veteran was often uninformed what legacy meant. ).  

     Even/especially attorney's were reluctant or slow to embrace the VCAA changes.  I can recall one or more who advised claimants to opt for legacy, in no small part because the attorneys were already familiar with legacy, and there were serious questions about the implementation impact of VCAA on Veterans.  

     And, attorneys had good reasons to be skeptical.  The "duty to assist" legislation which came about it the past 20 years or so, really did not help Veterans all that much because, for example, the courts ruled "its not CUE" when VA fails in the duty to assist.  

    In other words, VA can simply ignore its duty to assist, and its no big deal..the Veteran can not "come back" on VA if the VA fails it.  

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My experience with the VAIG  as stated.I called and fiiled a complaint live call.I asked if they would need any documents to validate my claims,they said not needed will be in touch,never got a call back and when I did they said it was resolved but could not ad more than that.I looked up my claim nmber and could not find anything.Called back and filed again,same outcome,waste of time

The whitehousehotline sounded better .again no followup though and when I checked it was again closed,no action needed.The review board intialy put me on the docket.later the VA egal team objected and said I had no case because I was a non paid employee.Volunteer handbook state we are considered non comp employees.

So their legal team knew of this injustice and took no action. You can see how deep this goes. I do have some good news with a major paper looking into it.

Parkinson has left me with a strong will to fight on .But Im getting a little sore riding riding Silver.(lol)

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