Washington, D.C., Oct. 8 – Presidential hopeful Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s new plan for veterans pays specific attention to veterans with disabilities, highlighting “inadequate mental health and addiction services.” According to the U.S. Census, 3.8 million veterans have a service-connected disability, which is a result of a disease or injury incurred or aggravated during active military service. Therefore, any comprehensive plan for veterans must include the 20 percent of veterans with a service-connected disability, as well as those who have disabilities due to other causes.
Sen. Klobuchar’s plan includes the expansion of “community-based options and telehealth services.” The ability to stay in our homes is a vital issue for all individuals with disabilities, which is why it is important that Klobuchar highlighted this in her plan.
This summer, Klobuchar announced more than 100 actions she would take during her first 100 days as president – one of which was expanding veterans telehealth services, with an emphasis for mental health services. Veterans, especially those in rural areas, face delays in access to care. Mental health care is just as urgent as other medical needs.
As such, her veterans plan calls for expanding and prioritizing mental health and addiction services, specifically combatting the high rates of suicide among veterans. “As President, she will also expand the VA’s family caregiver program to place a greater emphasis on mental health as well as invest in the mental health workforce at the VA, increase counseling services, and expand resources to help the tens of thousands of veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and other mental health needs,” the plan states.