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Veterans Voice Concerns With Congressman

Last updated on Wednesday, February 22, 2012

(FORT WAYNE) - Congressman Marlin Stutzman (IN-03) and the Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Jeff Miller (FL-01) held a veterans’ affairs forum in Fort Wayne Tuesday.

Dozens of area vets showed up with concerns ranging from unemployment to mental health.

More than 100 veterans came to the Classic Cafe in Fort Wayne with questions or just wanting to hear what the congressional leaders had to say. Some shared worries about homeless vets not getting the proper care and others about the challenge of getting veterans jobs when they come back from service.

After a question about the increasing amount of veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder, Miller said the VA hospital is not prepared for the vets that are coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan. But he said the Fort Wayne VA has a different problem that needs to be fixed immediately.

"Without question parking is a huge issue at the VA hospital," Miller said. "It wasn't originally built to have the daily traffic that it's got coming through and it now has a clinic and a lot of inpatient care that it's taking care of. So we have a lot of cars that are being parked in the parking lot and you hear from vets that are getting tickets when they go to the VA hospital. That's ridiculous."

The Fort Wayne VA hospital is set to get a 27,000 square foot facility maintaining inpatient services and treating the higher number of vets with PTSD. Stutzman expects it to be completed by 2014.

Stutzman said the VA is speaking with Parkview Randallia sharing space.

"With the Parkview facility there, it does make a lot of sense to get some cooperation there to provide better services and newer facilities to the VA," Stutzman said.

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