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Press Release of Senator Cantwell

Cantwell's Caseworkers Provide Services to Veterans

Cantwell to send staff to Yakama Nation Veterans Assistance Fair

Friday, October 24,2003

TOPPENISH, WA – Staff of U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell head to the Yakama Nation on Saturday to promote their casework services for area veterans. They will participate in the fourth annual "Veterans Benefits Assistance Fair and Stand Down."

In addition to learning about the casework services offered by Cantwell, veterans will be provided a meal and access to a number of free services, including haircuts, dental screenings, flu shots, and clothing. Veterans Affairs (VA) personnel will provide information about disability claims, legal services, home loans, and employment assistance.

"With so many great programs available to veterans," said Cantwell, "There is often little time for the VA to perform outreach. This ‘Stand Down' event provides a unique opportunity for educating veterans about these services, and my office is honored to participate."

The "Stand Down" title originates from temporary relief from the battlefield granted to war-weary soldiers. Today Stand Down represents a national program with local grassroots organization with the goal of assisting America's neediest veterans. Since the first Stand Down in 1988, over 100,000 vets have been assisted at the events.

The annual event, now in its fourth year, is sponsored by the Yakima Vet Center, Yakama Warriors Association, Yakama Nation Legends Casino, and the Greater Yakima Valley Veterans Coalition and Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs.

Cantwell caseworkers are available in person at two of her state offices—Seattle and Spokane. They provide a wide range of services to constituents. Caseworkers assist constituents with a number of federal programs and agencies, including (but not limited to) veteran's benefits, Medicare, Social Security, Immigration, and Housing and Urban Development.

"Washington state residents should not hesitate to call my offices for assistance," said Cantwell. "We'll either help you—or find the right person to help you. We work for you."

Cantwell is a constant supporter of increasing access to VA services. Earlier this month her efforts led to emergency funding for VA health care. The additional funding would provide care to an estimated 6,000 Washington state veterans who would otherwise not receive care.

WHAT: Veterans Benefits Assistance Fair and Stand Down WHEN: Saturday, October 25 from 8 AM - 3 PM WHERE: Yakama Nation Legends Casino Events Center 580 Fort Road Toppenish, WA For more information call the Yakima Vet Center at (509) 457-2736 or Yakama Nation Veterans Affairs at (509) 865-5121 ext. 4365.