The silo effect is entrenched in veterans' services and perpetuated by the "we take care of our own" paradigm. Other community silos believe the VA will step in and take care of the Vets that they see and can't/won't serve. Vets services are well insulated at the community level and as a result, there is little to no collaboration. Part of that problem is access to the person/department that can actually do something. The transit industry silo sees Vets as needing medical transportation, and/or that Vets are homeless and want the ride in air conditioning. There is diversity among the Vet populations and VA must admit that. New Vets want integration - don't want to be treated separately from general pop. Transportation coordination, mobility management,
integration and changing basis of transit from provider-based to consumer-based is systems change. Lessons are available from the disability advocacy and Independent Living community in how to approach Vets & their families issues with transportation and systems change. ATCI ESPN has designed a working solution - add Vets/dependents to the mix of the ATCIs, if not there already. Grow these models as part of the solution.
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