Hagåtña, Guam – U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Robert Wilkie will be visiting Guam and the CNMI for the first time this week. During his visit, Secretary Wilkie will meet with Acting Governor Joshua Tenorio, as well as members of the Guam Veterans Commission.
On Tuesday, Secretary Wilkie will tour veterans facilities and discuss VA initiatives with stakeholders. He will also honor Guam’s World War II heroes during a wreath laying ceremony at the Asan Bay Overlook.
“Secretary Wilkie’s visit to Guam gives us an opportunity to work on longstanding issues affecting the veteran community and advance our agenda of improving the availability of services,” stated Acting Governor Tenorio. “We hope to get his full support to provide our veterans with the services they deserve.”
Some of the concerns and issues local leaders plan to address with the VA Secretary are the availability and streamlining of services at the Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC), the long wait times for claims processing, expansion of VA services on Guam and increased support to local veterans organizations, and making use of federal lands to build veterans-related facilities, such as a veterans hospital, homeless shelter, and a substance abuse treatment center, among other topics.
Though they will not be meeting on Guam, Governor Lou Leon Guerrero and Secretary Wilkie were able to discuss the Administration’s priorities for Guam’s veterans while together in Pohnpei. Both Governor Leon Guerrero and Secretary Wilkie are attending the inauguration of Federated States of Micronesia President David Paneulo.
Secretary Wilkie will be joined by his Chief-of-Staff Pamela J. Powers and other officials from the VA.