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NFFE to Congress: Stop Treating Veterans like Political Pawns

Friday, March 3, 2017
 

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Rep. David “Phil” Roe (R-TX) has introduced H.R. 2159, a bill that would eliminate many of the systematic protections currently in place that help to ensure a high quality of medical care for veterans.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 3, 2017

Contact: Steve Lenkart
Phone: (202) 216-4458

NFFE to Congress: Veterans are Not Pawns

Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) expressed its disappointment with the introduction of a bill that will deter talent and qualified medical expertise from working at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  The bill, H.R. 2159, introduced by Rep. David “Phil” Roe (R-TX) will eliminate many of the systematic protections currently in place that help to ensure a high quality of medical care for veterans.


“As the VA strives to improve services and care for veterans, Rep. Roe’s bill will do nothing but inflict subjective removals and demotions without cause on the medical staff, which will place the health and treatment of veterans at great risk,” stated Randy Erwin, NFFE National President.  “This bill is bad policy, and it places our medical staff and vets in the middle to suffer like political pawns.” 

Rep. Roe’s bill comes after a series of intense hearings over the last several weeks in the House where witnesses were questioned along party lines; Republicans focusing on blame and Democrats focusing on funding and staffing. 

“Congress needs to accept some of the blame for its dissatisfaction with the VA,” stated Erwin.  “Lawmakers should properly fund the VA, provide training and tools for staff to succeed, defend workforce and systematic protections that enable effective and efficient treatment, and stop trying to privatize the VA under the guise of accountability,” Erwin continued.  “The private sector does not need the Committee on Veterans Affairs rooting for it.  America’s veterans do.”  

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Established in 1917, the National Federation of Federal Employees is the oldest union representing civil service federal employees.  NFFE represents 110,000 federal employees in 35 departments and agencies government-wide, including nurses, doctors and other health care professionals at 17 VA hospitals across the country. NFFE is affiliated with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO. For more information, go to www.nffe.org.

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