The Arizona Department of Veterans’ Services remains open to serve Arizona’s veterans during the federal government shutdown.
“Although the federal shutdown affects some services provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, ADVS remains fully operational to meet the needs of our veterans and their families,” said Ted Vogt, ADVS director.
As of Tuesday, more than 7,000 federal U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans Benefits Administration employees were put into furlough status, consistent with the VA’s contingency plan.
Because of these furloughs, a number of services will be suspended, including: the Education Call Center; personal interviews and hearings at regional offices; educational and vocational counseling; outreach activities and programs, including those conducted at military facilities; and VetSuccess on Campus.
The shutdown of public access to VBA facilities also affects Veterans Service Organizations with office space in VBA facilities, as public access to these VSOs is also suspended.
However, State Veteran Benefits Counselors normally located at the VA Phoenix Regional Office are available at the Arizona State Veteran Home-Phoenix to serve veterans with their claims. All other Arizona Department of Veterans Services offices throughout the state remain open as normal.
Veterans with questions can go to www.azdvs.gov or call 602.255.3373
According to the federal VA, all VA medical facilities and clinics will remain fully operational, including inpatient and outpatient care, and other special care services. Veteran claims processing and payments in the compensation, pension, education and vocational rehabilitation programs will also continue through late October.
VBA can continue to employ staff in its compensation and pension Call Centers. Individual Veterans can still initiate claims or check on the status of a claim by dialing 1-800-827-1000.
In addition, please note that VBA’s home loan guarantee and life insurance programs will continue operation during the appropriations lapse. However, veterans seeking approval of VA home loans may be impacted, as access to Internal Revenue Service data used by private-sector lenders to verify income may not be available.
The Department of Veterans Affairs Field Shutdown Guide is available at www.azdvs.gov that outlines the impact of the appropriations lapse on VA activities.