CHARLESTON, W.Va. – New Cabinet Secretary for the state Department of Veteran’s Assistance Rick Thompson is taking his office on the road. He’ll hold a series of meeting around the state with veterans to raise awareness about what the department offers and listen to concerns and ideas on how things could be better.
The former Speaker of the House accepted the job back in May. He said, in that short amount of time, he’s come to several conclusions.
“I found out real quick that we have a lot of services but it appears to me that a lot of the veterans don’t know about the services that are available to them,” explained Thompson.
He wants to change that, hence the meetings throughout the month of September.
“Sometimes you can sit in one spot and think you know what to do to help. But sometimes you get out and listen to the people, you pick up new ideas of things that can really be more beneficial,” stressed Thompson.
Already on Thompson’s must do list: help speed up the claims process, increase the number of veterans using their education benefits and having better coordination with other agencies.
Thompson said the meetings will be a great chance to get out and meet the people he’s working for and let them learn a little about him and his military service.
The public meetings start this week. Here’s a list of places, dates and times.
*Raleigh County Commission on Aging, September 11, 1pm
*American Legion Post 177 in Barboursville, September 12, 1pm
*Clarksburg VFW Post 573, September 18, 5pm
*Martinsburg American Legion Post 14, September 19, 4pm
*Moundsville American Legion Post 3, September 26, 4pm