Last May, the VA lost its three-year case fighting against Veterans for Common Sense. But a recent appeal by the VA could unwind all that. The May ruling told the VA to pull its act together and stop denying disabled veterans their Constitutional right to Due Process and unlawful government denial of Property.
The VA is coming back swinging like the Russian in Rocky IV. Let’s hope Veterans for Common Sense is able to hold its ground. This win against the VA is huge. If the Super Committee makes deep cuts to veterans benefits, a Constitutional win like this could ensure veterans still get the benefits they deserve.
The issue? Veterans for Common Sense wanted help from the Court to force the VA to provide the care it is legally required to provide to veterans suffering from PTSD. The Court held that the VA’s delays were so egregious that they violated veterans’ Constitutional Rights to Due Process and were an unjustified denial of Property.
According to the court, “The VA’s unchecked incompetence has gone on long enough; no more veterans should be compelled to agonize or perish while the government fails to perform its obligation.”
That’s right. Veterans have Constitutional rights, according to the 9th Circuit, to health care and veterans benefits. But the VA is not happy. They do not believe the Court should have any power to order the VA to do its job and deliver the services to which we are entitled.
VA fights back. Like the Russian, the VA is down but not out. Like all Executive Branch decisions lately, the VA seems inline with other Agencies – no oversight required. Don’t tell them how to not do their job. Suicidal and homeless veterans be damned.
I’d like the VA attorney’s to say “no Constitution for you” to the 18 veterans who commit suicide every day. Or to the over 1 million pending disability claimants stuck in the system. These veterans need help and the bean counters at the VA do not want to provide it.
Unfortunately, on November 16, 2011, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decided to allow the Department of Veterans Affairs to appeal its recent loss, en banc. This means all 11 judges will preside over oral arguments for both sides. Oral arguments have been set for December. Who knows how long the new decision will take to be announced.
Oh, and that decision in May – it no longer stands. So, this further delay will continue to preclude veterans from holding the VA Constitutionally accountable.
Do your part. Veterans for Common Sense needs our help. In a letter to subscribers, they requested all veterans with awful Regional Office experiences to speak up to their respective local media. Here’s your chance to make a difference.
Soldiers, it’s to suit up. DisabledVeterans.org has teamed up with Veterans for Common Sense to provide help with a Regional Office Survey. Let’s hold the VA accountable, in court. The results will help confirm what we all know, the VA is not doing its job effectively. Let’s make the public aware that we are a united voice of one. No one gets left behind.