This meeting was convened by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Social Work Policy Institute (SWPI) in collaboration with supporting partner, the University of Southern California School of Social Work (USC) and its Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families. This symposium was convened on June 12-13, 2013 as a catalyst for improving both policies and practices, and to explore the feasibility of promoting a national veterans policy. The more than 50 participants represented national organizations, government agencies, community service providers, foundations and universities. The participants had expertise in health, behavioral health and human service delivery systems and a large number of the participants were veterans, family members of veterans, or both.
The symposium participants' diverse perspectives and experiences in agencies, organizations and universities helped to stimulate thinking about the policies that support our nation's veterans, and to look at how we can leverage what we already have, identify what changes are needed, and suggest how we can best balance federal, state and community roles, responsibilities and resources to enhance the well-being of our nation's veterans and their families.