Senate Bill 493 harms veterans, those who care for them. Nearly half of all new federal employee hires are veterans, VA employs over 120,000 veterans.
Making it easier to fire employees has a disproportionate adverse impact on veteran VA employees who often encounter anti-veteran animus from management, may need more medical leave and accommodations than average — things management may use as an excuse to fire them.
Nationally, AFGE has represented numerous employees who faced adverse employment actions for speaking up about short staffing of PTSD treatment programs, cover-ups of legionella outbreaks that harmed patients and employees, and opioid overprescribing.
Additionally, every day, a VA employee makes suggestions or voices concerns because they encounter obstacles to providing veterans with the exemplary services they deserve.
If an employee is left only with a bare-bones, rushed, agency-run appeals process, they are much more likely to lose their job when all they were trying to do was improve the VA.
Please contact Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch and urge them to vote no on S 493.
Travis D. Riggs, Boise