Veterans Affairs Secretary “Pushed Out” for Standing Up for Veterans
Thursday, March 29, 2018
Washington, D.C. — Today, the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) reacts to President Trump’s decision to fire Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) Secretary David Shulkin, a known opponent of the effort to privatize health and medical services at the VA.
“Dr. Shulkin, as an experienced medical practitioner who governed the second largest department in the government, was brutally honest during his tenure about the inherent dangers of privatizing veterans’ care when the VA is the only healthcare system equipped to meet the unique needs of veterans,” stated NFFE National President Randy Erwin. “We believe Dr. Shulkin was targeted for his position opposing VA privatization, and he was pushed out of the Department because he stood up for veterans against the wishes of the Trump Administration.”
Even though a strong majority of veterans, veterans service organizations, and VA labor and professional associations agree that privatization of veterans’ care ultimately will hurt the quality, convenience and access to health and medical services for veterans, the effort to privatize the VA remains in full force by the Trump Administration and some prominent members of Congress.
“Veterans have made it known that they want options and access, but they do not want privatization,” Erwin continued. “However, political appointees at the VA have commandeered the Department and are steering operations toward privatization anyway. With Trump’s firing of Shulkin, the administration seems to be ignoring the needs of veterans to appease some of the President’s radical political supporters that want the VA privatized and gone. I have very serious concerns about where the VA may be headed in this new era of VA leadership.”