November 9, 2010

Whitehouse Holds Town Hall for Recently Deployed Veterans

Washington, DC – On Saturday, November 6, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) held a town hall at the Schofield Armory in Cranston to hear from the latest generation of veterans who have been deployed overseas. The event was a cooperative effort with the Rhode Island National Guard and included experts to provide information on the resources available to help veterans reintegrate back into civilian life.

The purpose of this town hall event was to recognize the enormous contributions of the new generation of veterans as we approach Veterans Day and gain a better understanding of the impact of deployments on our servicemembers and their families. Senator Whitehouse is working to identify the challenges of reintegrating back into civilian life and learn how to help make that transition smoother.

“As Americans look ahead to Veterans Day this week, it is important to not only reflect on the extraordinary service of our troops, but also to do our part to better serve their needs,” said Whitehouse. “I am committed to ensuring that our veterans and their families get the support they need before, during, and after a deployment.” “As one Rhode Island veteran so eloquently put it, ‘if we can find the resources to send our servicemembers into combat, then we can find the resources to care for them when they return.’”

“The RI National Guard has always enjoyed the strong support of our congressional delegation and Sen. Whitehouse’s meeting with our patriots today is continuing evidence of the support our warriors receive from him,” stated MG Robert T. Bray, Commanding General of the RI National Guard. “It is not lost on us that Sen. Whitehouse reached out on a day so near to that one day we set aside to recognize those on whose shoulders our freedom has been won. His interest and follow-on actions are a fitting Veterans’ Day gift to our Soldiers and Airmen,” concluded Bray.

Since September 11, 2001, a total of 5,400 Rhode Islanders have been deployed through the Army and Air National Guard. Ninety-five percent of Rhode Island National Guard members have been deployed at least once, and many have deployed several times. This high rate of operational tempo in recent years has placed significant demands on our servicemembers and their families. As a result, the new generation of veterans, particularly members of the National Guard and Reserves, are facing unique challenges.


Press Contact

Meaghan McCabe, (202) 224-2921