|Undercutting Vets’ Healthcare
Sequestration presents a direct threat to VA healthcare accounts. Worst case: VA healthcare could take a $1.1b hit, a crippling reduction that would severely limit the quality of care for veterans.
Spike in Unemployed Veterans
Finding employment for newly-fired veterans will be difficult. The national unemployment rate is 9%, but the unemployment rate for young Iraq and Afghanistan veterans is 29%. For wounded veterans it is 40%.
BRAC-ing Military Retirement
Proposals could include:
• Delaying payment of full retired pay until age 57 or 60
• Significantly reducing benefits payable for 20+ years of service
• Irreparable damage to recruitment and retention of the all-volunteer force
Indirectly Taxing Active Duty and Retiree Compensation
Higher TRICARE fees will directly impact today’s service members and retirees:
• Tripling pharmacy copayments would apply to family members of active duty service members lacking access to military pharmacies, and they’d also apply to drilling Guard and Reserve members and their family members who don’t have such access. For family members with chronic diseases or significant disabilities, that could have a big effect on their finances.
• Standard, Prime, and TRICARE For Life fee hikes — up to $2,000 a year or more
• Raising annual fees by as much as $1,500 or more for retired families under age 65
• Establishing new annual enrollment fees of up to $950 for retired couples age 65 and older
• Imposing means-testing of military retiree health benefits – which no other federal retirees endure
• Future annual increases tied to an unspecified health cost index (est. 6.5% per year annual growth)