April 10, 2015
Rep. Pete Aguilar Hosts Roundtable Discussion with Veterans
Today, Rep. Pete Aguilar (CA-31) hosted a roundtable discussion with veterans to discuss critical issues facing our veterans today, including health care, the VA backlog, housing, and unemployment. Local veterans, representatives from veterans’ organizations, and health care professionals participated in the roundtable held at the San Bernardino Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 8737.
“I’m grateful to the veterans who joined me today for this important discussion. Our brave men and women in uniform risk their lives every day to keep us safe and free – yet they don’t get the care they deserve when they return home,” said Rep. Aguilar. He added, “From the VA backlog to lack of affordable housing and high unemployment, we need to do better by our veterans. I will continue advocating for policies and programs that provide our veterans with the resources they need to readjust to civilian life and live healthy, productive lives.”
United States Marine and Vietnam veteran Richard Valdez participated in Friday’s roundtable. He said, “I think it’s great that Rep. Aguilar had this event, in fact, we need to have more of them. We were able to discuss several issues, including education, mental health, and specific concerns facing women veterans. I was also pleased to see VA representatives, County representatives, and other officials who listened to what we had to say. I’m glad I was able to participate and look forward to attending more events like this in the future.” Mr. Valdez is also the California Department Legislative Director for the Disabled American Veterans.
Only three months into office, Rep. Aguilar has championed several initiatives that support Inland Empire veterans. He co-sponsored a bill that would establish a pilot program to support on-the-job-training and apprenticeships for veterans. He also voted for legislation that creates incentives for businesses to hire more veterans, and he supported a resolution that aims to reduce military and veteran suicides, while improving access to quality mental health services.
Rep. Aguilar sits on the House Armed Services Committee and is a member of the Work for Warriors Caucus, a caucus that works to try to connect veterans with employers seeking their specialized skills.