March 06, 2017
Contact: Christopher Pumpelly

Honoring Our Heroes: New Policies to Better Serve Kansas Veterans

Veteran Policy Action Statements

Veterans are America’s heroes.

When they enlist, our men and women in uniform write a blank check to the United States, payable up to and including their lives. Because of their monumental patriotism and dedication to our nation’s future, our veterans deserve not only our respect and thanks, but our understanding, compassion, and commitment to act on their behalf.

Too many veterans return from war with wounds seen and unseen. Too many receive inadequate treatment, and that is utterly unacceptable. If we are willing to put our men and women in uniform in harm’s way, we must be forward-thinking enough to plan for their treatment, recovering and transition to civilian life when they return home.

Beyond the immediate recovery needed for many veterans, thousands more veterans need assistance helping to transition to civilian life. If young people are willing to commit their lives to America, it’s not too much to ask that America help them transition into the private sector when their service is complete, and help lift those in difficult situations.

The scourge of post-traumatic stress disorder has touched James’ family personally. He knows the way we’re treating PTSD is deeply insufficient, and he will lead on this issue in Congress. He wants to ensure Kansas veterans know they have a fighter in their corner.

James proposes the following policies: 

  • Veteran Jobs Transition Program - Too few resources exist to provide for job training, professional development, and dedicated networking opportunities for our veterans. Open to veterans looking for work, this new program will provide for:
    • A 1-year paid stipend with a partner organization of AmeriCorps, providing a full-time, paid service opportunity in American cities
    • Opportunities to develop on-the-job training with private sector companies in the veteran’s placement city
    • Veteran-based professional networking and development throughout the term of service, with an emphasis on job interviews toward the end of the service period
  • Veterans Legal Service Corps - Many veterans unfortunately encounter legal challenges for which they are ill equipped. From problems with disability benefits, to immigration, to civil rights issues, there are many legal circumstances that disproportionately affect veterans. James organized the Veterans Legal Association of Washburn, and knows personally more can be done for our vets. He proposes:
    • Working with the IRS to ensure any time and resources put toward qualified veteran-related work can be made completely tax-deductible for attorneys.
    • Encouraging law schools nationwide to develop veteran legal assistance programs like the one James developed at Washburn Law
    • Partnering with the American Bar Association to create more rigorous and widely developed veteran-focused continuing legal education curricula
  • Prioritizing a Full Time Veteran Staffer - James knows the red tape and runaround for veterans is outrageous. He is committed to dedicating a paid staffer in his Congressional office to deal primarily with veterans’ issues. 
  • Kansas Veterans Advisory Council - James wants to stay connected to Kansas veterans’ issues while he’s in Congress. When he’s elected, he will organize a Veterans Advisory Council to give him regular updates on veterans’ issues in Kansas, develop policy proposals, and help with recommendations to service academies.

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