tv President Trump Remarks at AMVETS Convention in Louisville KY CSPAN August 22, 2019 11:23am-12:12pm EDT
good afternoon. ladies and gentlemen, we have reached the time we have been waiting for, waiting for 75 years. the national headquarters is working closely with the administration to develop that are accountability, better tonsparency, better access high-quality health care and to protect the benefits our veterans have earned and need. amvetste house and continue to work to improve the lives of our veterans, more than 20 million of them, and their families today. that our keynote speaker has traveled from washington, d.c. today to tell us about his administration's efforts and continue helping us tackle the veteran suicide epidemic. is my and gentlemen, it distinct honor and privilege to 75thme to the amvets national convention here in louisville, kentucky the 45th president of the united states
of america, the commander in chief, the honorable donald j. trump. [cheers and applause] ♪ president trump: well, thank you very much. that's a great honor. great people. thank you. sit down, please. thank you. and i want to thank commander riley. truly thrilled to be here with thousands of america's proudest and toughest and most extraordinary patriots, the incredible veterans of amvets. we love our veterans. amvets. [cheers and applause] president trump: thank you very much. you are special people.
you fought courageously for our country, and now my administration is fighting courageously for you. that is for sure. and you know we have accomplished a lot, we have done a lot, and one of the things we have done is you get that medical care quickly now when you go into those doctors, and you used to have to wait for weeks and weeks and weeks, and you do not wait anymore. you go out and see a private doctor, we pay the bill, and people are really happy about it. the vets are very happy about it. [booing] applause] president trump: veteran's choice, you have been trying to get that for 44 years, they say, 44 years. probably earlier than that, but at least 44 years that we know of, and you got it, so congratulations. hopefully you do not have to use it too often, because you are
going to feel great, ok? every veteran here today across our land, thank you for your noble and incredible service. it is an honor, really, my life. i understand that i am the first commander in chief, first president to address you and be here. [cheers and applause] president trump: that is something that is very special. and it is also an honor to be the commander-in-chief of the greatest fighting force the world has ever known, the united states military, and it is stronger today -- [cheers and applause] president trump: and it is a lot stronger today that it was two and a half years ago, i can tell you that. a lot stronger. a lot stronger. $700 billion we spent, and then $716 billion, that is with a b, and this year, it is $738 billion. so we have rebuilt your military, and it is stronger than ever before, and that was
really needed. it was depleted, it was tired, it was exhausted, and you know that better than i do. we have totally rebuilt it. i want to thank your outstanding reid riley,mander, as well as your terrific executive director, joe chenelly. where is joe? thank you, joe. that is not a very good seat for you, joe. get that mention right up top? you want to give other people the better seats. i like that type of person. thank you, joe. [applause] trump: it is also my privilege to recognize your first national commander, retired air force senior master sergeant jan brown. [cheers and applause] president trump: thank you, jan. congratulations as well to this
year's recipients of the silver helmet award, especially a dear friend who was an inspiration to all americans, world war ii veteran and medal of honor recipient woody williams. thank you, woody. you are looking good, woody. woody is looking good. [cheers and applause] president trump: that was a big day, the medal of honor. medal oflike the honor. i wanted one, but they said you do not qualify. can i give it to myself anyway? [laughter] they did not think that is a good idea. great people. great men and women who get the congressional medal of honor. thank you, woody. of the men and women of amvets and ladies auxiliary. they have worked so hard, the sons of amvets, junior amvets, and the legendary amvets riders who are fighting to keep alive the spirit of rolling thunder.
i love that noise some of rolling thunder. wow. we are taking care of rolling thunder since i have been there. please stand up. you have so many wonderful people. thank you. and the leaders are all here. thank you. and we will see you in a little while in washington. and to honor the prisoners of war and those missing in action, today we renew our vow that america will never, ever forget. [applause] pres. trump: thank you. it is great to be joined by a number of champions for americans' veterans, including secretary of education betsy devos. betsy? betsy, doing a great job.
deputy v.a. secretary james byrne. james, thank you. great job. a man who has really done a great job, i do not know if the is always appreciated, that he has done an incredible job, and your state is doing phenomenal business, and i want to take all of the credit, but i can't, because he has done a lot, too, because he has been a truly great governor, matt bevin. thank you, matt. kentucky has had record numbers some of the best they've ever had in any category. it is a really incredible thing. and a man that i just watched on television, he is so good. congressman thomas massie, where is thomas? good job. thomas, say hello to our friends back in washington.
that was a good job. i just watched you. i cannot come to kentucky without also praising the exceptional work of senator mitch mcconnell. [applause] pres. trump: i have to tell you, this guy is a true fighter for our veterans and for kentucky. he has worked tirelessly to enact massive tax cuts, record defense spending, and that crucial be a reform that i was just talking about. and i have to think about all the things with respect to mitch, mitch is a good person, has let his leadership in the senate, we confirmed, think of it, almost 150 federal judges to hold our nation's beloved constitution and the foundation of american freedom, and mitch and i have worked very hard. we're up to 150. within two months, we will be at 179 federal judges and two supreme court judges.
[applause] pres. trump: and it is your senator, and for him, that is a passion like i have never seen before. there is nothing more important. when i became president, they said the most important thing you can do is judges, and they said supreme court justices, and as you know, we have named two supreme court justices, justice kavanagh, justice gorsuch. i want to congratulate mitch mcconnell, and you have him come and he is a champion, and he fights hard. he really is something special, and he loves your state. i will be campaigning for mitch, and i will be campaigning for matt, and we are going to get them both back in. i just have to say, because mitch has been somebody very special, and matt knows that as well. this year, we commemorated the 75th anniversary of d-day, june 6, 1944, when thousands of american patriots stormed the beaches of normandy and went
incredible job. today we celebrate amvets, who are 75 years of love and loyalty and lifelong service to our military personnel, to our veterans, and to their families. congratulations. thank you very much. [applause] pres. trump: thank you. amvets posts across the nation has become pillars of pride in our community. so true. and shining symbols of the enduring power of the american spirit. your support of our troops overseas, welcome them when they come back home, and you welcomed them, and you are there for them in every way, medically, physically, morally, you are
with them all the way, and they appreciate it much more than you would even know. you safeguard our values, pass on our traditions, and teach generation after generation to love our country, honor our heroes, and always respect our great american flag. [applause] pres. trump: we gather today at a truly incredible time for our nation. we are reawakening american pride and american greatness. we are america first. [applause] pres. trump: it is about time, too. it is about time, wouldn't you say? american first. you did not used to hear that, right? you did not used to hear it at all. you hear a lot now. i don't think you will. not this group.
not too many people in this country will feel that way. we are respected again as a nation. we are respected again. we are restoring the fundamental principles of government and first obligation, the highest loyalty is to our citizens. the loyal to our citizens really is the first obligation. no longer will we sacrifice america's interest to any foreign power. in all things, we are putting our country first. we are saying, let's say "make america great again," but we are almost there, "make america great again." we may have to switch it. you know what we're going to switch it to? huh? yeah? that is right. i will not say it to you, because this is not a campaign speech. [laughter] [cheers and applause]
pres. trump: i will not say "keep america great," but we are going to keep america great. [cheers and applause] pres. trump: we are going to keep america great. there is a lot of press back there. look at all of them. that's a lot of cameras going. look at all the red lights down there. the red light means you are on. when the lights are off, people get a little sleepy back here. [laughter] pres. trump: nowhere is this allegiance more essential than fulfilling a duty to the american warrior in the american veterans. we are holding our nation's solemn pledge to protect those who protect us, and they have protected us brilliantly. with america's core interests, guiding us as we do, we are making unprecedented strides. our american warriors pulverized the bloodthirsty killers of isis. we defeated 100% of the
caliphate in syria. we are holding thousands of isis fighters right now, prisoners, and we are going to give them to where they came, europe, certain countries in europe, they have got to take them back, because we do not want to hold them. we are going to give them back. they have got to take them. they let us hold them for 50 years. we don't want them. they should take them. do we agree? they should take them? [applause] pres. trump: they say to us, "why don't you hold them in guantanamo bay for 50 years?" and we spent billions of dollars taking them. now europe has to take them and different countries where they came from have to take them. do we agree with that? [applause]
pres. trump: i am just curious as to what you thought. we withdrew from the horrible iran nuclear deal, horrible deal. [applause] pres. trump: we brought home the remains of our fallen north korean war heroes. we brought them home, so many of them. many more are coming. so they can rest alongside their brothers and sisters in american soil. we believe in our sacred responsibility to ensure no one is left behind, right? [applause] pres. trump: we are rebuilding the awesome might of the united states military, whether it is big budgets, like i just described, and think of it -- thank you, thank you very much, i appreciate it -- and we are very proud of it. very proud of it. those in the military are proud, too. beautiful, new, the best equipment in the world, we make the best planes, we make the best missiles, the best ships,
we make the best everything. and it also, in this case, secondarily, it also happens to be made in the usa, each of it, and it is called jobs, jobs, jobs. that is secondary, but -- [applause] pres. trump: and the army will very soon have 300 powerful new m-1 tanks. the navy is deploying the most advanced class of aircraft carriers in history, with hundreds of new f-35's and f-18's, american airmen will continue to own the skies wherever we fly. we have the greatest air force in the world. [applause] pres. trump: and we are preparing to dominate the newest war-fighting domain by extending a sixth branch of the armed forces, it is called the space force. we need that. the space force. [applause]
pres. trump: it is moving along through approval, and it has become very popular. people see it now more than they did two and a half years ago. they see it now, and know how important it is for defense and offense, and so forth. we delivered the largest pay raise for every sailor, airman, coast guardsman, and marine, one of the largest increases. [applause] pres. trump: our active-duty personnel are the best equipped, best trained, most technologically advanced fighting force in the history of the world. the best equipment in the world, the best training in the world. america is a peace-loving nation. we seek friendship, we seek harmony, not conflict and division, but if we are threatened, we will never hesitate to defend our people, as they should be defended. [cheers and applause]
pres. trump: and if our enemies should dare to fight us, they will be crushed with overwhelming american might, no adversary stands a chance against the awesome power of the red, white, and blue. there is no military even close to ours. you read all sorts of things, "well, maybe this country, maybe that" -- it is only propaganda put out by different areas in different countries. there is nothing else close, and they all know it, and they tell me that. there is nobody close. and we have to keep it that way. and we don't want to use it, but we have to have it just in case, right? [applause] pres. trump: the members of our armed forces, and you understand that very well, the members of our armed forces have always lived by the word of douglas macarthur, "in war, there is no substitute for victory."
we have an armed forces that is unparalleled, and to achieve victory, there is no substitute for the unmatched character and courage of those who probably wear the nation's uniform. and we even have different uniforms. did you see some of the different designs of the uniforms? we are going back to a style and a look that nobody thought we would go back to, because of expense, and now we have brand-new, the most beautiful uniforms you have ever seen. but much more importantly, are the people who wear that uniform, what is inside that uniform -- that is much more important. much more important. [applause] pres. trump: the best in the world. every warrior who serves has poured out their hearts and souls for america. we believe their government must show them the same devotion, and return, and we have been doing that. at least for the last two and a half years, we have. can you believe it is almost
three years now? i have been saying "two and a half years now" for a number of months, and we are getting close to three. i will have to change it to three very soon. after years of neglect, we are fixing the heartbreaking failures from the last \administration at the \department of veterans affairs. america must never abandon our heroes in their hour of need. we will never do that. for that reason, i proudly signed into law the v.a. accountability act. [applause] pres. trump: for years, they could not get it done, 50 years, and i will not blame unions, i won't blame civil servants, i will not blame any of it, but, man, was their power against it. and we got it done. people mistreat people in the v.a., and we know what happens,
vets the care they so richly deserve. 7,600. think about it. they were treating some of them -- most of them are fantastic, but some of them were treating our people, our brave heroes so badly, sadistic, terrible people. they were terrible people, and they are gone. they are fired. 7,600. i did not know you are that vicious to get rid of so many. and everyone deserves to be out.
that was a big deal. that was a hard one to get. [applause] pres. trump: and as i said, something i guess i am most proud of because, i don't know, accountability was very important. some people think it was as important, maybe not, but most significantly, the v.a. reforms, we did the veterans' choice. i do not know which was more difficult. they were pretty much equal. but since i took office, nearly three million veterans have been able to choose a private doctor in their own community. and have you ever seen -- and this is a great tribute to the people at the v.a., the people and the leadership of the v.a. i don't hear these horror stories. i used to see, growing up, i would see "v.a., v.a., v.a." i don't know -- [laughter] pres. trump: i am not hearing
bad stories, i am hearing all good stories, but the fake news, they will go find somebody in the system. they will find somebody. they will find somebody in this giant medical system, the largest system in the world, by far. they are going to find somebody that was not treated perfectly, and he will be on the top of the news tonight. "we have breaking news." [laughter] pres. trump: we have also slashed wait times at the v.a. by more than 33%. that is a great thing. and the care is better. more importantly, the care is even better. a recent study published in the journal of american medical association found that wait times are now shorter for primary care at the v.a. than at
to improve the efficiency of the v.a., i signed the veterans appeals improvement and modernization act. do you know what that is? the v.a. has pressed 1.2 million claims and increased the number of appeals decisions by 70% compared to two years ago when i started doing this. that is a big number. [applause] pres. trump: we are modernizing your medical records to begin a seamless transition from the department of defense into the v.a. something they said they couldn't do. they said, we can't do it. it's too complicated. we did it. the v.a. has also cut opioid prescriptions by 30% over the last 2.5 years. [applause] pres. trump: and we are committed to defeating the opioid epidemic in america. and i have instructed all of our people to give so many grants to
lots of geniuses all over the country. i said, find a painkiller that is nonaddictive. get a painkiller that when you break your arm and go to the hospital, you don't come out of the hospital addicted to opioids. get a painkiller that is nonaddictive. we are closer than you think. we are closer than you think. [applause] pres. trump: our veterans are seeing dramatic improvements in the quality of care across the board. patients' trust increased at 92% of the va medical centers. 92% increase. we will not rest until we reach 100%. we will get there. [applause] pres. trump: probably there already. probably there already. no issue facing our veterans is
more urgent than ending the national crisis of veteran suicide. [applause] pres. trump: my administration is determined to do everything in our power to save the lives of our heroes. if you think about what's going on, we have a new drug that came out. johnson & johnson. i know you are dealing very strongly with johnson & johnson. they should make a contribution to the united states of america. they have something that really takes that horrible anxiety, whatever causes somebody to be so desperate to commit suicide. you take it. it's an inhaler. you take it. its results are incredible. i don't know, long-term. it really has an incredible effect on a lot of people. i've instructed the top
officials to go out and get as much of it as you can from johnson & johnson. and i think -- they have done so well. they have made so much money. i think they should give it to us for free. [applause] pres. trump: give it a shot. give it a shot. it's incredible, actually. it does something pretty amazing. it's due. it's been approved. it has been fully approved. it has gone through a long process. it has been fully approved. we think that is going to have a great impact. we have secured a record $8.6 billion for mental services. [applause] pres. trump: it's a record. we opened the white house v.a. hotline to ensure no claim ever again falls through the cracks. a lot of claims were having a lot of problems, going on for years.
we work it out. the v.a. is now providing same-day emergency mental health care and mental health screenings to every patient that walks through the door. it's incredible. the difference between now and three years ago. it will require government and society at all levels working together. we have to work together with a lot of different groups and people. a lot of progress is being made. things are happening. we must strive to build communities that serve, support, and protect our veterans from the very first moment they return to civilian life. it's an incredible adjustment. that's exactly what we aim to achieve with the prevents initiative. it's a task force created earlier this year to unify the efforts of government, business, and nonprofit groups. we want to build on proven strategies like the amvets heal, you know what it is.
it's an amazing partnership with the v.a. that has served over 600 families in crisis in the last year without a single life lost to suicide. not one. [applause] pres. trump: to every veteran who is facing the struggle, i want you to know that you are not alone. we are with you. you are not forgotten. we are with you all the way. you are not beaten. you will overcome. you will prevail. you will triumph. you will thrive. you will thrive. a lot of progress has been made. so many different things, we're making progress in. millions of americans are right by your side. we are with you every single step of the way. one of those americans is someone that you know very well. jim pigeon, a navy veteran and former national commander of amvets. where's jim?
[applause] pres. trump: come on up here, jim. for the past 1,257 consecutive days, jim has challenged americans to join him in doing 22 push-ups. don't challenge me. [laughter] pres. trump: don't make me do that. representing the number of veterans whose lives -- that's the number of suicides per day. can you believe it? i said, this can't be possible. you would think a year. a month. a day. nobody believes it. thousands of patriots have joined him in raising awareness. together, they are summoning the national will to act. i want to thank jim. jim, say a few words. please. [applause] jim: thank you. mr. president, it's an honor to
be here. i would not be able to do this without the support and love and prayers of my beautiful wife, paulette. [applause] pres. trump: he's got strong arms. [laughter] pres. trump: it's like a piece of steel. thank you, jim. no one deserves the blessings of freedom more than the heroes who risk their lives to defend it. for this reason, my administration is worked aggressively to boost veteran employment, and we are setting records. since my election, we have reduced the number of unemployed veterans by 37%. that's pretty good. [applause] pres. trump: veteran unemployment has reached the lowest level ever recorded. [applause]
pres. trump: same thing with african-american unemployment. same thing with asian unemployment. same thing with hispanic unemployment. same thing with many other groups. it has been amazing. to every employer in america, if you are looking for a worker, of unrivaled skill, integrity, and devotion, all you have to do is hire a veteran. that is what is happening and they are doing it. [applause] pres. trump: i have a friend who has been doing it lately. he said, "why didn't i do this 25 years ago?" i said, "that's your problem." he's very happy. every service member has the right to return to civilian life with dignity and security. driven by this, we have helped 30,000 veterans find permanent housing over the last two years. 30,000. [applause] pres. trump: we have also expanded the g.i. bill so that
veterans can use their benefits to get an education at any point in their lifetime. a crucial reform to expand opportunity to veterans in every stage of their career. that's a big thing. [applause] pres. trump: and today, i'm proud to announce that i am taking executive action to ensure that our wounded warriors are not saddled with mountains of student debt. in a few moments, i will sign a memorandum directing the department of education to eliminate every penny of federal student loan debt owed by american veterans who are completely and permanently disabled. [applause] [cheers and applause] pres. trump: incredible.
nobody can complain about that. nobody can complain about that. the debt of these disabled veterans will be entirely erased. it will be gone. [cheers and applause] pres. trump: they will sleep well tonight. altogether, this action will wipe out an average of $30,000 in debt owed by more than 25,000 eligible veterans who have made immense sacrifices. the ultimate sacrifice, in many ways. for our nation. they have made a sacrifice that is so great and are such incredible people. and they never complain. they never complain. that's hundreds of millions of dollars in student debt held by our severely wounded warriors. it is gone forever. [applause] pres. trump: i want to thank secretary devos for her
leadership in making veteran debt forgiveness a top priority for the department of education. betsy, thank you very much. stand up. stand up. [applause] pres. trump: and there will be no federal income tax on the forgiven debt. that is really big stuff. [applause] pres. trump: it's all past. all we have to do is sign it -- which we will do it that beautiful desk. ok? [applause] pres. trump: today, i'm also calling upon all 50 states to immediately waive all applicable state taxes, as well. they will hopefully be going away very quickly. most of the states have are ready agreed to do this. joining us today is one of the many american heroes who will benefit from this action. catherine castle, she served in three different branches of the armed forces. the army, the navy, and the air force.
you will have to tell me which is the best, please. i want to know which is the best. [laughter] pres. trump: which is the best? don't say it. she may say it now and i'll be in big trouble. please say a few words -- say a few words. catherine: thank you. this is an amazing relief on my this is for many thousands of veterans as well, thank you. [applause] trump: catherine developed multiple serious health conditions after two tours. it was related to her service lungding significant problems. despite these obstacles, karen is now pursuing a degree at the university of nevada. catherine, we are really
profoundly grateful for your service and for your sacrifice, you have been incredible and thank you and it's great to have gotten to know you. , thankdy in this room you. veterans like catherine who of made such a norma's sacrifices for a country cannot be asked to pay anymore. rather it is america who owes our heroes a supreme debt of gratitude. [applause] that's the way we feel. across oceans, jungles, mountains and deserts and battlefields and enemy camps, across the globe, or veterans fought and bled to vanquish our enemies and preserve america's birthright of freedom. our country, her liberty, families, our homes, our safety are very live. everything matters and everything who we hold dear our sacred to us and secured by the grace of god and the immortal
courage of those who serve. the story of the american veteran and the american warrior , they are the great warriors, is the story of the american nation. you have written our history, shaped our identity, forged our andiny, marched us to glory always planted the righteous flag of american victory. [applause] you have a filled our enemies with dread. you have filled our friends with hope and you have filled our american heart with fierce patriotic pride. because of you, america is safe. because of you, america is strong. because of you, america is free. and because of you, america will forever remain the bravest come up mightiest, and greatest nation on the face of the earth. thank you. [applause]
thank you. because of you -- you. because of you. etsould now like to ask amv leaders to come forward, secretary devos, please come forward, deputy secretary bern, governor bevin, sergeant catherine kassel, and sergeant to join me on stage as i son the presidential memorandum facilitating the cancellation of student loan for 25,000 of our most severely disabled veterans. [applause] with today's order, we express the everlasting love and loyalty of a truly grateful nation. god bless our veterans and god
[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2019] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> we have a few live events today in on c-span to tell you about. coming up at 1:30 p.m. eastern, a news conference on combating illegal robo calls. a group of states attorney general will be there and a discussion about children's online privacy concerns. little bit later this afternoon, former boston celtics basketball player bob cousy receives the presidential medal of freedom at the white house. and after that, a form on time a change with presidential
candidates tim ryan and john c-span. live here on and coming up tonight at 930 p.m. eastern, we will bring you a conversation on campaign debates and how they are planned and why some candidates refuse to take part. here is a preview. >> political debate has been an integral part of the american political process at all levels. and yet, over the last decade, debates between candidates seeking political office has declined. not for lack of effort as community and civic groups including the city club as well as television stations and other media organizations have organized debates only to have candidates often incumbents turned down invitations, refusing to debate their opponents or desiring highly choreographed abates.
in 2006, the city club famously gubernatorial candidates after their refusal to participate in an unscripted debate. debates, so tor speak, has gained momentum. the proliferation of social media, cable news, and other online platforms has given candidates opportunities to connect with audiences in ways that debates used to provide. furthermore, when it comes to debates, there is often no agreed-upon authority, no shared sense of what best practices are, and no clear idea as to what debates all to look like or strive to accomplish. all things we have seen in the recent debates among democratic candidates for the president of the united states. in an effort to preserve political debates as part of our democratic process, several states have created debate commissions with the goal to convene high-quality debates that play a substantive role in
informing citizens about issues and candidates on the ballot. in 2018, the ohio debate commission was formed, joining indiana, utah, and washington as states with this type of statewide collaboration. how are they working? what should the future of debates look like? entirecan watch this form on candidate debates from the city club of cleveland tonight at 9:30 p.m. eastern and a reminder, you can also follow all of our programs online at www.c-span.org and listen with the free c-span radio app. in the wake of the recent shootings in el paso, texas and dayton ohio, the house judiciary committee will return early from the summer recess to mark up three gun violence prevention bills. it includes banning high-capacity ammunition firearms, restricting from those deemed by a court to be a risk to themselves and preventing individuals convicted of misdemeanor hate crimes on purchasing a gun.
wednesday,ge begins september 4 at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span and www.c-span.org and if you are on the go, listen to our live coverage using the free c-span radio app. weekend, on american history tv, from four munro, port comfort virginia, in the first africans arrived in virginia 400 years ago. our guests will be saturday at 8:30 a.m. from norfolk state university taking your calls about the origins and history of slavery. our live coverage from fort munro point comfort, virginia continues at 9:30 a.m. for a commemorative ceremony with virginia elected officials, governor ralph northam, senators mark warner and tim kaine and house of delegates speaker kirkland cox. at 6 p.m. eastern, hear the story of the civil war told and 56 minutes by gary aleman of the american battlefield trust.
sunday at 6 p.m., american artifacts takes you to the virginia museum of history and culture for an exhibit on african-american history from reconstruction through civil rights. explore our nations passed on american history tv every weekend on c-span3. the mikva challenge held its public speaking competition, "soapbox nation: youth speech showcase" at the newseum in washington, d.c.. founded in 1997, the mikva challenge aims to promote civics among students. this is one hour. and 10 minutes.
>> hello, everyone. good evening. thank you for joining us today. you are up here with mikva challenge, we are committed to developing young people to be informed and active citizens to create a just and equitable world. named after two great civic leaders, we believe in the power of the voices that are here with us today and we believe in helping young people to create civic action to improve the world. i am going to turn it over to a colleague and friend from facebook education. [applause] >> hi, everyone. my name is nicole and i work on the education team focused on use leadership. -- on youth leadership. our mission is to provide young people with support and resources they need to drive positive changes in their communities and schools. we are thrilled to be getting this partnership, to be supporting mikva in their work. to elevate you the voices around the country. super excited to hear the youth speeches today. for you all, young people raising your voice is to help