The Official Voice of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

May/June 2005
MINORITY AFFAIRS Committee Report
 
 

Working To Implement The Mission
 

FRANCISCO IVARRA, CHAIR

The Minority Affairs Committee has been working diligently to enhance our visibility and viability within VVA and our veterans’ community. Our members are strong advocates for our fellow veterans, and we are committed to serving our minority veterans. We look forward to our National Convention and to working within our VVA organizational structure, the VA’s Center for Minority Veterans, and other veterans organizations involved with issues of mutual interest: the National American Indian Veterans Association, the Hispanic War Veterans of America, and the National Association for Black Veterans. We are actively involved with the following issues, and we will continue to work toward successfully implementing our mission and goals.
  • Our workshop at the 2005 National Convention is dedicated to reviewing and revising the Minority Affairs Committee strategic plan and mission implementation.
  • Reprinting the Minority Affairs Committee’s information and recruitment brochure; having it ready to distribute at the National Convention; and working to have it included on the VVA web site.
  • Review and comment on the VA’s report and findings of the recent Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans’ visit to Puerto Rico.
  • Support the National American Indian Veterans Association in its effort to become a congressionally chartered veterans organization.
  • Support the initiative against the VA’s closure of Fort Buchanan in Puerto Rico; submit a letter to BRAC Commission requesting that Fort Buchanan remain open until an economic impact study is conducted; and submit an amended resolution supporting the non-closure of Fort Buchanan.
  • Minority Affairs Committee member Gumersindo Gomez will represent our committee at the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans’ issues forum in Puerto Rico in June.
  • Support the National Center for post traumatic Stress Disorder studies and findings that demonstrate how PTSD and war-zone stressors correlate with race and ethnicity.
  • The Minority Affairs Committee previously submitted a letter of support to have Vincent H. Okamoto’s Distinguished Service Cross, awarded to him in Vietnam, upgraded to the Medal of Honor. We also have submitted a letter supporting Rafael Peralta for the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in Iraq.
  • Support and endorse proposed legislation that helps and represents equity to all veterans.
  • The Minority Affairs Committee Diversity Award will be presented at the VVA 2005 National Convention.

   

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