Inside the Center for Women Veterans
The Center for Women Veterans was established by Congress in November 1994 by Public Law (P.L.) 103-446.
- To monitor and coordinate VA’s administration of health care and benefits services, and programs for women Veterans.
- To serve as an advocate for a cultural transformation (both within VA and in the general public) in recognizing the service and contributions of women Veterans and women in the military.
- To raise awareness of the responsibility to treat women Veterans with dignity and respect.
- The Director serves as primary advisor to the Secretary on the Department policies, programs, and legislation that affect women Veterans.
- Monitor and coordinate with internal VA offices on their delivery of benefits and services to women Veterans.
- Liaison with other Federal agencies, state and local agencies and organizations, and non-government partners.
- Serve as a resource and referral center for women Veterans, their family and their advocates.
- Educate VA staff on women Veterans military contributions.
- Ensure that outreach materials portray and target women Veterans with images, messages, and branding in the media.
- Promote recognition of women Veterans’ military service and contributions by sponsoring activities and special events.
- Coordinate meetings of the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans.
- African American History Month 2020 - On February 11, 2020 the Center for Women Veterans and the Center for Minority Veterans partnered to host a Special Screening of "The Six Triple Eight; No Mail, Low Morale."
- Women Veterans with Disabilities are Valued - In April 2019, the Center for Women Veterans highlighted, “Women Veterans with Disabilities are Valued” to raise national awareness of the contributions of women Veterans with disabilities and to tell their story of resilience.
- Women Veteran Trailblazers Initiative - Each year CWV sponsors an annual campaign to celebrate the contributions of women Veterans. The 2019 Campaign launched on March 6, 2019, in honor of Women’s History Month and will continue throughout the year to celebrate women Veterans’ contributions during and after military service.
- Pink Fridays - VA’s Center for Women Veterans recognized the strength and resiliency of Breast Cancer survivors by wearing pink on Fridays in October 2018.
- Nationwide Baby Shower - To honor and support Veterans welcoming new babies into their families in 2018, VA hosted the very first Nationwide Baby Shower for Veterans in May 2018!
- Women Veteran Athletes Initiative - To raise national awareness of the service, diversity, and resilience of women Veterans, in March 2018 VA’s Center for Women Veterans hosted an exhibit featuring 10 women Veteran Athletes in 10 VAMCs nationwide, after which it traveled to additional facilities.
- Women Veterans Art Exhibit - 10 women Veteran artists had their art exhibited at VA medical centers around the country in 2017. VA’s Center for Women Veterans partnered with Veteran Artist Program (VAP) on this initiative.
- 2017 National Women Veterans Summit
The 2017 National Women Veterans Summit took place in Houston, Texas, on August 25-26, 2017. The women Veterans population accounts for 10 percent of U.S. Veterans, and that number is expected to grow to 15 percent by 2030.
- “State of Women Veterans” Social Media Campaign
From September-November 2016, VA conducted a “State of Women Veterans” social media campaign during which we provided weekly segments to explore issues impacting women Veterans and what we are doing to support women Veterans as they face these issues.
- 2015 Women Veterans Campaign
The Center for Women Veterans led a Women Veterans Campaign. The Campaign consisted of forums, sessions, and workshop events in the five VA Districts, from June through September 2015. Events showcased benefits and services for women Veterans.
- 2011 National Training Summit on Women Veterans
- 2010 Forum on Women Veterans
The Secretary of Veterans Affairs hosted “A Forum on Women Veterans,” to engage and educate Veterans service organizations and women Veteran advocates about enhancements in VA services for women Veterans.
- 2008 National Training Summit on Women Veterans
- 2004 National Summit on Women Veterans
- 2004 National Summit on Women Veterans Issues
Legislation Related to Women Veterans
- P.L. 106-419, “Veterans Benefits and Healthcare Improvement Act of 2000,” authorized special monthly compensation for women Veterans with a service connected mastectomy. It also authorized benefits to children born of mothers who served in Vietnam and who have certain types of birth defects.
- P.L. 107-330, “Veterans Benefits Act of 2002,” authorized special monthly compensation for women Veterans who lost 25 percent or more of tissue from a single breast or both breasts in combination (including loss by mastectomy or partial mastectomy) or has received radiation of breast tissue.
- P.L. 108-422, “Veterans Health Programs Improvement Act of 2004” authority permanently to extend Military Sexual Trauma counseling and treatment to active duty service members or active duty for training.
- P.L. 110-186, “Military Reservist and Veteran Small Business Reauthorization and Opportunity Act” established a Women Veterans business Training Resource Program.
- P.L. 111-163, “Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010,” provides contract for a comprehensive study on barriers to health care for women Veterans, pilot program to provide group readjustment counseling in retreat settings for newly separated women combat Veterans, mandates inclusion of recently separated women on Advisory Committees for Women Veterans, and requires VHA to carry out a 2 year pilot program to assess feasibility and advisability of offering child care to Veterans.