It is hard to believe March is already upon us. The State Legislative Session is in full swing, and this week the Commander’s Task Force held their annual Veterans Day on the Hill event. This is a day when Veterans and families around the state unite on the issues that are most important in 2014.
I want to thank the Governor, the Legislature, and all our elected officials for their ongoing support of Veterans in this state. I am proud that Minnesota is one of the most Veteran-friendly states in the nation, but we cannot rest or become complacent. In fact, I believe that here at MDVA one of our greatest strengths is our ability to anticipate and encourage change. This willingness to find new and better ways to serve Minnesota Veterans and their families was evident over this last year as we provided relief to Veterans through special needs grants to help keep them in their homes, opened the nation’s second Veteran focused Adult Day Center, explored new ways of outreach, launched an award-winning website, and made education more accessible to the Veterans who need it most. This might sound like an impressive list, but I can assure you we still have more work to do!
As deployments and military op-tempos slow around the globe, our tempo increases. Minnesota has more than 360,000 Veterans, and the current needs are as diverse as the people we serve. With this in mind, partnerships are more important than ever before, especially as we make progress in the area of Veteran homelessness prevention. In addition to continued work with the Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans), we are full-speed ahead with our MOVE program to provide housing, education and resources to Veterans in need.
To the Minnesota Veterans Community - thank you for your support, your leadership, and your partnership.