VETERANS: Senator Murray Examines the Challenges Faced by Women Veterans at the VA

Jul 14 2009

Murray discusses need to improve outreach, ensure that women who have seen combat get proper care and benefits, efforts to increase child care services, and care for homeless women veterans


(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) questioned VA officials and women veterans about many of the challenges they face when returning home to seek care at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) during a hearing of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee. Senator Murray, who has authored landmark legislation to prepare the VA for the influx of women veterans in the coming years, focused on a number of challenges women service members are facing including:

  • Inadequate outreach and recognition of their service, 
  • The need to properly document combat experience in the medical records of women veterans, 
  • Child care as a hurdle to accessing health care,
  • Making women comfortable at the VA, and 
  • The difficulty associated with coming home to care giving roles.

Listen to Senator Murray’s Opening Statement

“Since the founding of our nation, women have always played a role in our military,” Senator Murray said today. “That role has changed over time, and in today's conflicts, women are playing a far different and far greater role.

“The number of women veterans enrolled in the VA system is expected to double in the next two to four years. This makes female veterans one of the fastest growing demographics of veterans today. Behind these statistics are real women. Women who have sacrificed for our country, who have borne the burden of battle, and who now deserve the respect and benefits their service has earned.“

  • Listen to Senator Murray questioning officials from the VA and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) about the work they are doing to improve care for women veterans.
  • Listen to Senator Murray questing women veterans about the challenges they face at the VA. 
  • See witness list and read testimony from witnesses.
  • Learn more about Senator Murray’s Women Veterans Health Care Improvement Act of 2009