Mae Flexer

State Senator

Mae Flexer

Deputy President Pro Tempore & Federal Relations Liaison

An Advocate for Us

December 4, 2017

Flexer Participates in Veterans Affairs Policy Conference at White House

Bipartisan summit aimed at creating better policies to support veterans of the United States Armed Forces

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Mae Flexer (D-Danielson), Co-Chair of Connecticut’s Veterans’ Affairs Committee was invited to participate in a White House Veterans Affairs Conference with state and local leaders from throughout the United States. The Conference provided legislators, state commissioners and other leaders focused on veterans issues the opportunity to share ideas and develop better public policies to support veterans in four key areas.

“Our veterans stood up for us, and it is our duty to stand up for them when they return home,” said Senator Flexer. “Providing critical support for veterans is an issue for which we must put all partisanship aside and develop smart, effective policies. I am grateful to have participated in this dialogue at the White House, and share some of Connecticut’s veterans concerns and our state’s successful policies. I appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with state and federal leaders to develop new ideas that will better support Connecticut’s veterans.”

“I was particularly gratified to directly ask David Shulkin, the U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs about several concerns that veterans from northeastern Connecticut have asked me about. I was surprised to learn directly from the secretary that, like many veterans in our region, he too is confused by the current disability rating system. In response to my question the secretary announced that the VA is about to commence a thorough evaluation of that system in the coming months. I also asked him about concerns with the VA handling of Agent Orange complications and the recently discovered conditions that are traced to parasite exposure in Vietnam. He assured me he has recommended improvements to the program and that the VA is moving forward with implementing them in the coming months, pending approval from the administration. I will continue following and advocating for these issues as they develop,” Flexer continued.

The conference also focused on policies and strategies that states can adopt to better support veterans in four key areas:

  • Veterans Employment and Transition Assistance
  • Veterans Homelessness
  • Addiction, Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
  • VA Modernization and Reform

Flexer stressed the importance of the US Department of Housing and Urban housing vouchers during these discussions. “These vouchers have been a critical part of Connecticut’s sustained effort to eliminate homelessness among veterans. Without these vouchers, Connecticut would not be able to rapidly find housing for homeless veterans and would not be able to sustain that housing,” Flexer said.

As Co-Chair of Connecticut’s Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Flexer works to develop, introduce and pass laws to support Connecticut veterans. This year she led passage of two new laws that provide direct property tax cuts to veterans and their families. She also championed Public Act 17-127, which prohibits discrimination against veterans in employment, housing, granting of credit and other areas. Flexer also fought to ensure that the Connecticut State budget fully funds the honor guard to participate in Connecticut veterans’ funerals.