Most believe U.S. neglecting veterans’ health, poll finds

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As we observe Veterans Day, a new Fairleigh Dickinson PublicMind poll finds a majority of Americans believe the United States is shortchanging those who have served in the military.

Eighty percent of Americans surveyed don’t believe the U.S. is providing care that is good enough for its veterans, said poll director Krista Jenkins.

“We also asked about who do you think is to blame for letting veterans down, and we find that a plurality or 42 percent would point the finger at Congress, with around a third or 29 percent who identify Veterans Affairs; 11 percent blame President Obama.”

Paul Anderson, director of Veterans Services at Fairleigh Dickinson, served in the Marine Corps for 33 years. He believes the findings would be a lot different if more veterans were surveyed.

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“Sure, there are going to be some horror stories out there with the VA. I understand that there are some folks that have had bad experiences,” he said. “But I’ve received exceptional care.”

The survey finds most people believe homelessness and the lack of mental health services are the most critical issues for veterans.

Fifty-six percent of those surveyed say the responsibility for helping veterans should remain with the government, while 35 percent believe the private sector would do a better job.

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