Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Shea-Porter released the following statement in recognition of Veterans Day, observed tomorrow:
“Veterans Day is a time to honor our veterans and recognize their tremendous sacrifice for our great country. From the beaches of Normandy and Iwo Jima, to the battlefields of Korea and Vietnam, to the deserts of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan, our veterans have made immense sacrifices for our country and we are all truly grateful.
“However, saying “thank you” is not enough. Sadly, we have failed to fulfill President Lincoln’s call to “care for him who shall have borne the battle.” There are more than 23 million veterans in America right now, many of whom are struggling with post-traumatic stress, substance abuse, and other chronic health issues as a result of their service. Here in New Hampshire, many of our 130,000 veterans are forced to travel out of state because we are the only state without access to full-service healthcare.
“This treatment of our veterans is appalling and shameful. These dedicated men and women answered their country’s call. Our nation’s military heroes should not also be forced to fight for the healthcare and benefits they were promised. My greatest priority in Washington is to make sure that we as a nation live up to our responsibilities to our veterans.
“We owe our veterans more than one day of recognition each year; we owe them a lifetime of gratitude. We owe our veterans more than platitudes about “supporting the troops”; we owe them a demonstration of our support through our actions. We owe our veterans far more than words of thanks; we owe them our respect, care, and support.”