PRESS RELEASE: Over 3100 Veterans Sign Petition Calling on Pentagon to Halt Plans To Ends Pension Program

 ·, Press Release   ·   Link to Article

Washington, DC - The largest progressive group of veterans in America,, quickly collected over 3100 petition signatures from veterans, urging Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta to drop plans to end a guaranteed pension for military members who serve over 20 years.

That petition can be viewed here:

The text of the petition reads, "Dear Secretary Panetta, We are concerned about the proposed plan to cut and privatize military retirement. Not all careers are created equal, and our troops deserve a retirement system that respects their sacrifice. The Pentagon budget should not be balanced on the backs of servicemembers and their families while we are overpaying for unnecessary defense contracts and extending our commitment in wars that aren't making us any safer. It is simply unacceptable to ask our troops to work longer, deploy more, spend more time away from their families, spend more time in imminent danger, and on top of that throw their pension on a Wall Street roulette wheel. We find this proposal unacceptable and ask that you keep the current retirement system that respects the sacrifice of the men and women who defend this nation."

Richard Allen Smith, Vice Chair of, and an Afghanistan War Veteran added, "This plan is completely unacceptable, and Pentagon policy makers should be ashamed for even thinking about it.  How many career servicemembers are going to stick around once they're told they aren't getting their pension after twenty years? We will see a mass exodus of the most competent and essential leaders in our force."

Yet, last week, Secretary Panetta confirmed the Pentagon was considering a plan that would end pensions for service members with over 20 years of service to America, and replace it with a 401(k)-style system.

A plan like that is "the kind of thing you have to consider," said Panetta

Founded in 2006,  and backed by over 100,000 members, the mission of is to use public issue campaigns and direct outreach to lawmakers to ensure that troops abroad have what they need to complete their missions, and receive the care they deserve when they get home. also recognizes veterans as a vital part of the fabric of our country and will work to protect veterans' interests in their day-to-day lives. is committed to the destruction of terror networks around the world - with force when necessary - to protect America.  While non-partisan, the group is the largest progressive organization of veterans in America.


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