Department of Veterans Affairs investigators conducted spot checks at 10 veterans benefits offices around the country and came to a disturbing conclusion: the VA has been systemically shredding documents related to veterans’ claims—some potentially affecting their benefits.
The VA Office of Inspector General conducted the surprise audit at 10 regional offices on July 20, 2015, after an investigation into inappropriate shredding in Los Angeles found that staff there was destroying veterans’ mail related to claims….
Of 155 claims-related documents [in the to-be-shredded bins], 69 were found to have been incorrectly placed in shred bins at six of the regional offices: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, New Orleans, Philadelphia and Reno[.]
For the math challenged senior VA employees, that’s a 44% rate. That rate is not consistent with mere carelessness.
This is part of a venerable history of misbehaviors that is just too widespread and too long-lasting to be accidental. Especially against the backdrop of VA management’s refusal to terminate, for cause or for any reason, those at any level who are misbehaving.
It might seem nice that it’s the VA’s own IG facility is the one that’s finding these failures to perform, but maybe that IG is doing so secure in the knowledge that there will be no consequences to the findings. The VA’s IG, after all, works directly for the VA’s Secretary.
Veteranos Administratio delende est.