Veterans left in limbo by gov’t shutdown

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SAN DIEGO – Military veterans were the latest group to fall victim to the government shutdown.

Around 7,000 workers were furloughed Tuesday morning at the Department of Veterans Affairs, which means many vets won’t be getting their earned benefits.

Veterans were turned away from the VA benefits headquarters in San Diego Tuesday after roughly 200 of its 500 employees were sent home.

VABig strides had been made to reduce the VA’s estimated year and a half backlog on veteran’s benefits claims, but those efforts were halted.

“You can imagine what’s going to happen,” said Guy Anastasia, with Disabled American Veterans, a service organization that helps veterans process benefit claims.

“Yesterday, we had hearings scheduled before federal judges where we argue their cases. The hearings were cancelled. These are veterans that have waited three to five years for this right,” said Anastasia, who’s a Vietnam veteran.

He added veterans currently getting their benefit paychecks could also be affected by the shutdown, as soon as November 1st.

“Those who have benefits who are getting their disability checks may not be deposited into their accounts,” he stressed.

VA medical facilities remained open, but officials are watching things closely. If the gridlock extends into the government debt ceiling negotiations, chances are the VA healthcare system may be affected.


  • 333maxwell

    Shutdowns are SUPPOSED to hurt. That is the point. That is what is so frustrating by this SELF MADE GOP crisis.

    Some 'patriots' these Republicans turned out to be.

    Only ONE party has the ability to open Government this minute if they WANT TO. And it isn’t the Democrats.

    I almost ENVY future history students reading and studying about the great GOP MANUFACTURED crisis of 2013 and how it destroyed a recovering economy and threw hard working Americans back into the deep economic hole just they were just beginning to climb out of the economic hole they were tossed into so callously already.

    • Guest

      The GOP has passed 5 versions of a budget to the Senate who has rejected them all. How is that a GOP problem?

  • Rob

    So let's just continue the downward spiral. By cutting VA compensation checks many vets won't be able to pay rent or mortgages which affects the housing market. Then there is the educational benefits which once again affects mortgages, rent and educational facilities. How much worse do we want this to get? on top of the pathetic job market we just make things worse and worse. in the meanwhile congress is still making money everyday. Wake up America!

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