VA Hiring Reform Bill Heads to U.S. House Floor

Jul 12, 2018

The House Committee on Veterans' Affairs Thursday passed legislation designed to reform hiring for Human Resources positions at VA facilities.

The measure is co-sponsored by 12th district Congressman Mike Bost. The Murphysboro republican told the committee the issue hit close to home for him after a survey at the Marion VA Medical Center showed a decline in communication between management and staff and reporting problems to management.
"Our Oversight Subcommittee staff then visited Marion in order to get a firsthand look at the issues at the facility. During the site visit, multiple employees raised concerns about poor management and poor communication, distrust between leadership and management, and the lack of accountability."

Bost says issues in the Human Resources Department are common.
"HR management is a critical part of delivering quality healthcare.  HR is responsible for recruiting and retaining highly qualified professionals, and the current status quo within VHA's HR offices cannot continue."

The bill instructs the VA to establish qualifications for each HR position and establish standardized performance metrics similar to the private sector.

It moves to the House floor.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has published a report identifying serious human capital challenges and flaws within VA’s Human Resources operations that hamper VA’s ability to effectively serve veterans.