Sunday, June 4, 2017

How Does A Slogan Prove Worth?

Allison Jaslow wrote "The VA needs to fix its woman problem starting with this motto"
The Department of Veterans Affairs has a woman problem. Need evidence? Look no further than its motto: “To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan.”
That motto – engraved on plaques outside VA buildings across the country, featured proudly in VA presentations and on the agency’s website – comes from President Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address. It was an eloquent and well-meaning statement in its time. But the face of U.S. troops, and veterans, has drastically changed since then.
Today women are nearly 20 percent of recruits, 15 percent of the active duty and 18 percent of the reserve component. We have been on the battlefields of every U.S. war and conflict over the past decade, with more than 345,000 women deployed since Sept. 11, 2001. And we will be the fastest growing segment of the veteran population over the next five years, with our numbers expected to top 2 million by 2020.
Is she right? 

Female Vietnam Veterans
Though relatively little official data exists about female Vietnam War veterans, the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation estimates that approximately 11,000 military women were stationed in Vietnam during the conflict. Nearly all of them were volunteers, and 90 percent served as military nurses, though women also worked as physicians, air traffic controllers, intelligence officers, clerks and other positions in the U.S. Women’s Army Corps, U.S. Navy, Air Force and Marines and the Army Medical Specialist Corps. In addition to women in the armed forces, an unknown number of civilian women served in Vietnam on behalf of the Red Cross, United Service Organizations (USO), Catholic Relief Services and other humanitarian organizations, or as foreign correspondents for various news organizations.
Women Veterans Population
The total Veteran population in the United States, Puerto Rico, and Territories/Foreign, as of Sept. 30, 2016, was 21,368,156. The population of women Veterans numbered 2,051,484. States with the largest number of women Veterans were Texas, California, Florida, Virginia and Georgia. State-by-state totals are as follows:
Alabama 44,190
Alaska 10,283
Arizona 54,953
Arkansas 21,361
California 163,332
Colorado 46,793
Connecticut 16,626
Delaware 8,797
District Of Columbia 3,843
Florida 154,820
Georgia 93,251
Hawaii 12,820
Idaho 10,153
Illinois 55,458
Indiana 36,245
Iowa 15,512
Kansas 18,528
Kentucky 25,351
Louisiana 32,411
Maine 10,081
Maryland 58,413
Massachusetts 25,711
Michigan 45,499
Minnesota 25,891
Mississippi 20,777
Missouri 39,157
Montana 8,613
Nebraska 11,853
Nevada 21,592 Nevada Female Veteran Suicides
New Hampshire 8,706
New Jersey 33,197
New Mexico 17,173
New York 65,756
North Carolina 86,791
North Dakota 4,991
Ohio 67,554
Oklahoma 30,948
Oregon 28,207
Pennsylvania 71,319
Puerto Rico 5,322
Rhode Island 5,213
South Carolina 47,442
South Dakota 6,609
Tennessee 46,358
Texas 183,597
Utah 11,885
Vermont 3,338
Virginia 111,034
Washington 65,405
West Virginia 10,586
Wisconsin 33,916
Wyoming 3,815
Territories/Foreign 10,010
Total Women Veterans 2,051,484
Women Veterans Need More Support, So When Do We Do It?
"In comparison, the age-adjusted rate of suicide among female veterans has increased 85.2 percent. And among veteran women ages 18 to 29, the risk of suicide is 12 times the rate of nonveteran women."

Yes, she is right but taking care of all of our veterans has to be more than a slogan. It has to be a mission that is being accomplished for all generations!