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President Trump signs 'historic' bill to transform VA

24 June, 2017, 01:23 | Author: Rickey Alvarado
  • White House: Trump to sign VA accountability bill on Friday

Trump repeatedly promised during the election campaign to dismiss VA workers "who let our veterans down", and he cast Friday's bill signing as fulfillment of that promise.

"The administration is committed to ensuring the nation's veterans have access to the care, services, and benefits they have earned", the White House said in a statement picked up by USA Today. The bill cleared the House last week by a vote of 368-55, and the Senate by voice vote.

Watch above, via The White House.

Paul Rieckhoff, founder of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, applauded the move, saying, "In a nasty, partisan environment like we've never seen, veterans' issues can be a unique area for Washington to unite in actually getting things done for ordinary Americans".

The VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protect Act of 2017, which was championed by Sen. It will also increase protections for whistleblowers to help make certain that they are not retaliated against for speaking up about wrongdoings at the department.

The American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal employee union, opposed the bill.

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The bill enjoyed a measure of bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate before reaching the President's desk.

The Veterans Affairs bill was backed by Shulkin, who had called the department's employee accountability process "clearly broken".

"Every veteran receiving care at VA facilities will now know that those entrusted with their care can be held responsible for their actions".

Trump signed the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act, the most significant reform bill in the history of the department.

"The ultimate goal is nothing less than a transformation of the culture within the VA so that our veterans receive the best care possible", McCarthy said.

Trump has promised VA reform and greater care for USA veterans since the early days of his campaign, which followed a scandal in 2014 and changes at the department due to long wait times at some VA locations that prevented retired servicemembers from getting necessary care. "It makes it just as easy to fire a good employee, an innocent employee, as it will be to fire a bad employee".

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