One of the main goals of the Veterans of Foreign Wars is to ensure Veterans receive the entitlements due them. VFW's National Legislative Service office monitors all legislation affecting veterans. It alerts VFW membership to key veterans' legislation under consideration and actively lobbies Congress and the administration on veterans' issues. These advocacy efforts are effectively supported by the concerted actions of our individual members.
The Department Legislative Committee provides a similar function at the state level by monitoring activities of the State Legislature and conducting advocacy efforts on those issues that affect veterans.
Legislative Grassroots Efforts
The VFW Action Corps is our national grassroots advocacy network comprised of more than 300,000 VFW members and patriotic supporters of veterans. This group stays up-to-date on the issues facing our veterans, our military and their families, standing ready to email, write, call and visit our nation’s lawmakers to make their voices heard. The VFW Action Corps is free and open to all patriotic Americans who care about the military and veterans’ communities.
Join the VFW Action Corps today and add your voice to the thousands of veterans’ advocates making a difference every day, and if you’re already a member of the VFW Action Corps, encourage your friends and neighbors to join the effort!
•The VFW Action Corps Weekly, an easy-to-read electronic newsletter that
highlights the VFW’s advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill.
•Immediate access to a nationwide database of contact information for all elected officials, a congressional directory.
•Regular VFW "Action Alerts” on how to get involved when our nation’s veterans,
service members and their families need their voices heard on Capitol Hill.
The VFW Action Corps is what gives the VFW its strength in advocating for our nation’s heroes. Working hand-in-hand with the VFW’s National Legislative Service -- whose office is in eye-shot of the Capitol dome in Washington -- members of the VFW Action Corps are armed with all of the tools and information they need to help the VFW in its mission to support our nation’s veterans.
To sign up for the Action Corps go to VFW.Org Click on Advocacy > Grassroots Efforts > scroll down to Action Corps Sign Up Today!
SOURCES OF INFORMATION FOR LEGISLATIVE OFFICERS
Each District and Post should have a functioning Legislative Committee to assist the National Legislative Service and the Department Legislative Committee to disseminate legislative information to their members. We must have an informed membership to generate effective advocacy efforts. The important tools are available on the Internet and, particularly on the following websites:
Web sites of Legislative Interest:
- Extensive search facilities are available for researching legislative issues in Congress. For complete information on any bill, enter "H.R." and the number for House bills or "S" with the number for Senate bills.
- Extensive information provided by the Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs. (There will be some partisan viewpoints expressed.)
- Information concerning veterans’ legislation in the California Legislature. (This site is maintained by the Chairman of the VFW Department of California Legislative Committee.)
District and Post Legislative Committee members may also sign up to receive periodic reports on important issues by sending their email address, name, and Post or District number to the Chairman of the Department Legislative Chairman.
HOW TO REPORT
Report activities that are related to the VFW national and state legislative programs. Examples of reportable activities include organized letter writing to legislators in support of veterans issues endorsed by the VFW, Department of California; organized telephone activities to legislators; and personal calls on legislators in their offices by members of the Post. Members who attend the Department Legislative Day at the Capitol will have a very good opportunity to visit their own representatives in the State Assembly and the State Senate during this event. All activities should be reported on-line via the Department website under " Par ti cip ate i n
Important! - To qualify for awards, a Post must enter their report via the electronic reporting system as mentioned before. In addition send a report containing specific actions such as letter writing, responses to your letters and any other efforts of advocacy completed to Legislative Department Chairman.
Donations to the State Legislative program which support our annual legislative day program as well as legislative activities to include the work of the Chairman/Vice Chairman when required in Sacramento, lobby efforts, etc. should be sent to directly to Department Headquarters along
with a note stating that the donation is for the legislative activities of the Department. Note: Make all checks payable to VFW Dept. of CA and marked Legislative.
Each year, the VFW Department of California recognizes one member of the California State Senate and one member of the State Assembly as Legislators of the Year. Post and Districts may nominate legislators for these awards by submitting recommendations to the Department Legislative Chairman. Recommendations should be received prior to January 1, and should reflect activities by the nominee performed in the State Legislature during the previous year.
Each year, the VFW Department of California offers a Legislative Day at the Capitol program in Sacramento. Attendance at this program is open to all VFW members. The program is an afternoon social and the presentation of the VFWCA William Manes Legislator of the Year awards. Attendees also attend hearings by the Legislature's Committees on Veterans Affairs. The scheduling of this program is based on the Calendar of the State Legislature and will vary from year to year. Check the Meetings and Events page of the Department website for information.