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

PVA National President Robert Thomas Testifies Before Congress Veterans’ Affairs Committees

Post Date: March 6, 2024
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Non-profit leader unveils PVA’s 2024 policy priorities and urges Congress to pass the Elizabeth Dole Act


WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar 6, 2024) Paralyzed Veterans of America National President Robert Thomas testified today before a joint hearing of the House and Senate Committees on Veterans’ Affairs. Thomas unveiled PVA’s 2024 policy priorities, underscoring the need for comprehensive support systems and policies that address the unique challenges faced by our nation’s veterans with catastrophic injuries and diseases.

“Disabled veterans have demonstrated remarkable resilience and courage in the face of adversity,” said Thomas. “Addressing their needs and those of the entire disability community demands immediate attention and concerted efforts from all stakeholders.”

In his testimony, Thomas fervently advocated for legislative initiatives aimed at enabling and empowering disabled veterans, their families, and caregivers. Thomas increased the impact of his message by referencing real-life challenges faced by actual PVA members, like U.S. Army Veteran/PVA National Vice President Anne Robinson and her husband, Harry, who are routinely negatively impacted by direct care workforce shortages.

Additionally, Thomas addressed several key policy priorities, including the dire need to protect and strengthen VA’s specialized systems of care; address staffing shortages; expand access to long-term care services; improve availability of home and community-based services (HCBS); and enhance VA benefits for paralyzed veterans and their survivors.

“Ensuring access to vital care, robust support systems, and equal opportunities for disabled veterans is not just a moral imperative but a fundamental obligation. It is incumbent upon Congress to honor their service and societal contributions by allocating proper funding and enacting policies that enable them to lead fulfilling and dignified lives.”

Throughout his testimony, Thomas emphasized PVA’s dedication to advocating for policies that enhance the quality of life and opportunities for paralyzed veterans. He also expressed gratitude to the Committees for their bipartisan efforts in addressing the needs of America’s disabled veterans as well as reaffirmed PVA’s commitment to collaborating on matters of mutual concern.

“Paralyzed Veterans of America stands ready as a committed partner and invaluable resource, dedicated to working collaboratively with legislators to enact meaningful policies that enhance the lives of those who have selflessly sacrificed for our nation.”

To learn more about PVA’s 2024 policy priorities, send a letter to your member of Congress, take part in important petitions, receive legislative alerts, and join PVAction Force visit To hear more about Anne and Harry Robinson’s caregiving concerns, thoughts, and challenges follow their story at  



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