In a new twist, the Department of Veterans Affairs has crossed a new threshold. Their lack of punishing senior leaders for violating rules, regulations, and laws, has resulted in two senior executives being reinstated due to a lack of fair treatment.
In other words, because their bosses were not punished for violations and crimes committed, it would be unfair to punish them for doing the same. This is why Kimberly Graves and Diana Rubens, although found guilty of the charges against them, had their positions reinstated as senior executives in the Department of Veterans Affairs.
As a reminder, these two individuals manipulated the hiring system, were accused of coercing subordinate employees to pressure them out of lower responsibility jobs, then hired themselves for the positions. In the process, they retained the higher salary they had before, and accrued more than $400,000 in moving costs paid for by the government.
This continued slap in the face for veterans is a demonstration of a self-supporting system that reinforces veteran frustration with the bureaucracy of the VA. It can take months of waiting to get an initial appointment, employees can throw away and hide claims information and records, people are erroneously declared deceased and have to fight to get their benefits reinstated, and yet no one seems to be held responsible at the VA.
When the Department of Veterans Affairs was established, it was not supposed to be a place where civilian administrators demonstrated questionable ethics for personal gain. It was a place to care for the wounded. The recent examples continue to demonstrate that this vision has been lost.
In February of 2013, the Department of Veteran Affairs hired a disabled Army Veteran named Bradie Frink. As he had a claim in the works at the office he was hired at, they transferred the claim to a different office. His records were lost during the transfer and after months of waiting and requesting help to find the records within the department, he reached out to his senator.
Frink was subsequently fired for a ‘failure to follow supervisory instructions, including using inappropriate methods to search for his claims folder.” It took Frink two years of legal fights to get his job back. Two years of fighting to work for an organization that fired him after they lost his claims paperwork and he employed every tool at his disposal to find it. Frink is now being reimbursed back pay for his inappropriate firing.
The reality is that veterans are not asking for much. They want to be treated with respect, to be provided with the care and benefits that are legally theirs, and to have it done in a timely manner. These examples demonstrate that the VA is continuing to head down a direction that is detrimental to the care of service members, and more in line with the personal enrichment and retaliation for reporting of its senior leaders.
Veterans want to be inspired. They served their country. There is no reason they should have to serve the VA as well.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.