Councilwoman Cindy Bass (8th District) plans to introduce a series of resolutions during this week’s Council session on critical issues facing veterans and military families. Veteran issues with transitioning to civilian life, mental and physical trauma, housing, and unemployment will be included. The resolutions will also call for hearings on the variety of challenges and disparities suffered by veterans in Philadelphia. An additional focus will be placed on the unique needs of female veterans such as healthcare disparities, and sexual trauma.
“As Chair of the Committee on Public Health and Human Services, I recognize that our military men and women need greater access to the various resources available to them,” Councilwoman Bass said. “Among these, access physical and mental health education and treatment is crucial to the integrity that this country and the City of Philadelphia provides for our veterans.”
Councilwoman Bass will deploy a multifaceted legislative approach to tackling challenges faced by veterans. She will be partnering with the Philadelphia Veterans Advisory Commission, the City’s American Legions, government agencies, health care professionals and social services providers. The hearings will examine issues like the federal Veterans Affairs backlogs affecting veteran benefits, and high unemployment and homelessness among veterans, often linked to mental health challenges.
The hearings will also work to identify the best outreach strategies to educate Philadelphia veterans on the extensive network of resources and services the City offers.
“I believe that the character of a country can be measured by the effort that nation has placed on caring for those who have risked their lives to defend it,” Bass said. “As such, protecting veterans is not just the morally correct thing to do. It is our duty.”
“As the new Director of the Philadelphia Veterans Advisory Commission, we must do everything we can to support our American heroes and their families when they come out of service,” said Veterans Advisory Commission Director Carlo Aragoncillo. “Not only are we to connect Philadelphia’s Veterans with the resources and benefits they rightfully deserve, but we also have a responsibility to shape a welcoming home for them to return to.”
The package of resolutions will be introduced at Council on Thursday.
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Councilwoman Cindy Bass represents the 8th Council District, which includes Germantown, Mt. Airy, Nicetown, Tioga, Chestnut Hill, portions of Logan, Olney, Feltonville and West Oak Lane. She is Chair of Council’s committees on Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs and Public Health and Human Services.