Tester, VA Secretary Shinseki to host meetings for Montana veterans

Senator, Secretary to host events in Helena, Bozeman, Billings next week

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester and U.S. Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki will host public meetings for veterans in Helena, Bozeman, and Billings on Thursday, July 7 and Friday, July 8.

Tester, a powerful advocate for Montana veterans and a member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, is encouraging all Montana veterans to attend the free and public events to share ideas and to receive information about veterans’ services.

The Helena event will focus on issues specific to Montana’s veterans–such as transportation, women’s health, PTSD and access to quality health care in rural and frontier communities.

The Bozeman event, at Montana State University, will focus on access to higher education opportunities for Montana veterans as well as efforts to address veterans unemployment.  Tester is an author of the 21st Century G.I. Bill, which improved higher education opportunities for all post 9/11 veterans.

Tester and Shinseki will host two events in Billings. At the Thursday afternoon event, at the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Tester and Shinseki will meet with tribal leaders to discuss access to VA services and benefits earned by American Indian veterans.  Tester’s landmark Rural Veterans Healthcare Improvement Act included a provision to increase coordination between the VA and the Indian Health Service. 

On Friday morning, Tester and Shinseki will host a question and answer session with Billings-area veterans following a tour of the new Billings VA Clinic which Tester secured.

“I’ve had the honor of championing veterans’ issues over the past few years because I’ve listened to their input, their concerns and their good ideas.  Working together we’ve been able to turn these ideas into real policies that work for Montana’s veterans,” Tester said.  “I look forward to hearing more from Montana’s veterans next week with Secretary Shinseki because we have more work to do to live up to the promises made to the men and women who have honorably served our nation.”

A bio for Secretary Shinseki can be found here.

EVENT:                      Helena Veterans Roundtable
DATE/TIME:                Thursday, July 7 from 8-9 a.m.
LOCATION:                 National Guard Headquarters Auditorium
                                Enter through main gate (photo ID required)

EVENT:                      Bozeman Veterans Education Meeting
DATE/TIME:                Thursday, July 7 from 12-1 p.m.
LOCATION:                 Montana State University
                                Strand Student Union Building, Ballroom A

EVENT:                      Billings Tribal Veterans Meeting
DATE/TIME:                Thursday, July 7 from 4 – 5 p.m.
LOCATION:                 Bureau of Indian Affairs – Room 3043
                     316 North 26th Street (Federal building – photo ID required)

EVENT:                      Billings Veterans Roundtable
DATE/TIME:                Friday, July 8 from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. 
LOCATION:                 Big Horn Resort hotel – Conference center
                    1801 Majestic Lane (directly across from Billings VA Clinic)