graphic of a man in a wheelchair next to the PVA logo. Paralyzed Veterans of America.

Paralyzed Veterans of America issues statement in reaction to Department of Veterans Affairs newly updated mission statement

Post Date: March 16, 2023
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar. 16, 2023) Paralyzed Veterans of America Executive Director Carl Blake issues statement today in response to the Department of Veterans Affairs updating their mission statement, which dates back more than six decades.

Following outreach to tens of thousands of Veterans, the VA decided to update its mission statement. The new, more inclusive statement reads: “To fulfill President Lincoln’s promise to care for those who have served in our nation’s military and for their families, caregivers, and survivors.” The mission statement previously read: “To fulfill President Lincoln’s promise ‘to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan’ by serving and honoring the men and women who are America’s veterans.”

“VA’s mission has long been to serve all eligible veterans and by extension their families, caregivers, and survivors and its motto should reflect that mission. Its new mission statement reflects what the department’s long-standing mission has always been, while formally recognizing the service of women veterans and acknowledging both the sacrifice of veterans’ families and their survivors and the importance of caregivers in the lives of disabled veterans.”

Blake continued, “Paralyzed Veterans of American remains hopeful that VA’s new mission statement will make it abundantly clear to the world that the department’s services and benefits are for all eligible veterans, their families and survivors.”

VA announced the motto change today to more broadly reflect the people the department serves. VA currently serves more than 600,000 women Veterans, who make up the fastest growing cohort of Veterans. VA also serves more than 50,000 Veteran caregivers, more than 600,000 Veteran survivors, and millions of Veterans who did not serve in combat. PVA is proud to stand with all of the individuals reflected in VA’s new motto, including our own Charles McCaffrey who shared his survivor story at today’s ceremony announcing it.


About Paralyzed Veterans of America
Paralyzed Veterans of America is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and the only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated solely for the benefit and representation of veterans with spinal cord injury or diseases. The organization ensures veterans receive the benefits earned through service to our nation; monitors their care in VA spinal cord injury units; and funds research and education in the search for a cure and improved care for individuals with paralysis.

As a life-long partner and advocate for veterans and all people with disabilities, PVA also develops training and career services, works to ensure accessibility in public buildings and spaces, and provides health and rehabilitation opportunities through sports and recreation. With more than 70 offices and 33 chapters, Paralyzed Veterans of America serves veterans, their families, and their caregivers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Learn more at