HONOLULU (July 20, 2014) – Following the release of data from the Veterans Administration regarding wait times, State Representative Mark Takai, a Lieutenant Colonel in the Hawaii Army National Guard, came out strongly to re-emphasize Hawaii’s commitment to our state’s veterans.
“I have been outraged with the state of our nation’s Veterans Administration and with the lack of care our injured veterans have received,” Takai said. “While I am pleased that wait time has been reduced from 145 to 81 days, this is still far short of where we need to be.”
As a member of the Legislature and the Chairman of the House Veterans and Military Affairs Committee, Takai has worked to strengthen the relationship between the military, our veterans, and our communities. In 2011, he worked with then-U.S. Assistant Sec. Tammy Duckworth to provide grants to states to address veteran homelessness.
“I am glad, that with the public’s support, we are finally moving in the right direction. I have worked for the last 10 years to ensure our veterans receive the care they have earned, but I am distressed it took such unacceptable conditions for other politicians to understand this current crisis,” Takai said.
As the only veteran in the Democratic Primary for Congress, Takai is the only candidate with a personal connection to this issue, as a VA enrollee himself.
“With the fewest veterans in Congress since World War II, we need more people with first-hand experience dealing with these issues,” Takai said.
“I support Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard’s proposed legislation to temporarily reimburse non-VA medical facilities that treat eligible veterans,” Takai added. “It is first-hand knowledge and common-sense solutions like this that we need more of in Congress.”
Mark Takai is a member of the Hawaii Army National Guard. Use of his military rank, job titles, and photographs in uniform do not imply endorsement by the Department of Defense or Department of the Army.