In the wake of the recent partial federal government shutdown, a key veterans organization is asking Washington to forward-fund the Veterans Administration.
AMVETS officials say the government’s treatment of veterans during the recent shutdown was “deplorable,” and they are pushing legislation to prevent a repeat of the situation. They cite as examples of their dissatisfaction the halt to death benefits for the war dead and the barricading of the World War II Memorial during the 16-day shutdown.
The executive director of AMVETS is a Pennsylvania native, Retired Marines Corps Major Stewart Hickey. He told Radio PA News he is pushing for the passage of a measure he calls the “Putting Veterans Funding First Act.”
Hickey said the bill would stipulate that veterans programs be funded a year in advance so “veterans aren’t used as political pawns” when federal lawmakers decide, as he described it, “to play games.”
Major Hickey also took the opportunity to suggest that Pennsylvania needs to do more for its partially-disabled veterans.