7/8/2010 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Department of Veterans Affairs officials opened registration on July 8 for a women veterans forum that will address the quality of VA health care, the provision of benefits for women and ways for VA to continue improving access to the care and benefits for women veterans.
"The VA forum will bring advocates for women veterans together to learn about VA services and to share valuable information with each other," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. "The forum will also give veterans' advocates the tools they need to help build women veterans networks and communities throughout VA."
Secretary Shinseki and VA department heads will attend the forum July 28 at the Women's Memorial in Arlington, Va.
Because of anticipated demand, available seats will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis, and confirmed registrants will be notified by e-mail once registration is filled. Registration -- through the Center for Women Veterans by e-mail at 00W@va.gov -- closes when either all seats are filled or no later than July 16.
The forum will run from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., with morning presentations and an afternoon information marketplace at which participants are invited to move through the gallery and gather resources and materials provided by VA program offices, veterans service organizations and advocacy organizations. There also will be an afternoon screening of the updated "Lioness" documentary film about women in combat.
Presentations from the event will be made available online. Feedback about this event and announcements on future events will be available to forum participants. For more information contact the Center for Women Veterans at (202) 461-6193 or by e-mail at 00W@va.gov.
VA officials have undertaken major initiatives to transform the department to meet the unique health care needs of women veterans and provide the best quality care at every VA medical center. In addition, the agency is working to shorten the delays for claims processing, improve access to VA health services for minority and rural veterans, end veteran homelessness and ease the transition back to civilian life.
There are about 1.8 million women veterans among the nation's total of 23 million living veterans. VA officials estimate women veterans will comprise 10.5 percent of the veteran population by 2020.