The VA’s Center for Women Veterans celebrated its 20th anniversary today at the Department of Veterans Affairs headquarters in Washington, D.C.
“Our Nation has 359,000 women serving right now – about 16 percent of the Active, Guard, and Reserve force,” said VA Secretary Bob McDonald during the ceremony. “Women Veterans represent 10.5 percent of all Veterans in the United States. They have earned the title of Veteran and we’re proud to honor them all.”
VA’s Center for Women Veterans team is led by women Veterans, who understand the needs of Veterans and are working day in, and day out, on their behalf.
Women are the fastest growing group within the Veterans population. According to the 2011 Veteran Population Projection Model, in 2014, women comprised 11 percent of the total Veteran population in the United States. By 2040, women are projected to comprise 18 percent of all living U.S. Veterans, with 58 percent of women Veterans coming from the Gulf War era (Source: Veteran Population Projection Model, 2011).
“Those estimates mean we have a lot of work to do,” McDonald said. “We have to ensure VA serves all Veterans in the way they want and need to be served – so every Veteran can call it MyVA. “
Women Veterans are a diverse and ever-changing group. In 2014, according to the 2011 Veteran Population Project Model, 34 percent of the women Veterans population is non-white and Hispanic; 83 percent of women Veterans are 35 years of age or older.
Congress created the Center for Women Veterans in 1994 to ensure that women have access to VA benefits and services on par with male Veterans, and to monitor VA’s administration of benefits and services to women Veterans.
For more information about women Veterans, visit www.va.gov/womenvet.