Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Testimony before the Texas Veterans Committee.

Greetings Friends and Readers,

It has taken me a while to be able to digest what happened at the committee meeting, and then to be able to write about it. 

I did decide to testify, and I am very glad that I did. There were four of us testifying and a few extra special folks who came to support us.  We got there at 8am, and they were listening to 'invited guests first.  The first two folks took about an hour.  There were updates on many veteran programs, and we heard the Chair of the committee speak over and over again about how these folks need to be taking better care of veterans.  But not one veteran was invited to speak.  

It was finally around 4pm that we got to testify.  Up first, was Arthur...
Here is his testimony.

I was... abhorred at how the Chair treated him after he states what it is that his representivie won't meet or talk to him about.  And she says this isn't the time. Well, yes Maa'm, for us who have watched friends die, it sure as shit is!!! 

Next up was Kate,
 Here is her testimony.

And then Jeremiah, 
Here is his testimony.

And I got to go last.  After the way I felt they treated my fellow veterans, I spontaneously decided that when my timer went off, I was going to keep going. I was going to say my piece, screw the two minutes. We veterans deserved better then  that!  I knew there was no one coming after myself, and while I would never take their time... I did want to do justice for so many.  I didn't mean to be rude.. but we are very passionate.

Here is my testimony.

After Art says what his issue is, the Chair does not ask another question.  We have fired our first shot across the their bow.  If this was not the time and place to speak of veterans mental health issues, when was???
This was one of the hardest things to do, but it was absolutely the right thing to do!

 We will not give up, we will not stop... we will bring home all Texas medical refugees.

I would be remiss if I did not mention the kindness of the Chair's Veteran Committee staff member. He stopped me after the testimony to tell me he was going to be looking into it. His kind words and support means more then I can say.   I hope this will be an opening of dialog between veterans and our State office.
Over and out,

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