An internal training guide used by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs compares veterans unhappy about their care to Oscar the Grouch.
The Philadelphia Inquirer obtained a VA training slideshow on how to help veterans with their claims. It was shown to VA employees staffing town-hall events with veterans in Philadelphia.
The Inquirer reports about a dozen slides include pictures of the grumpy "Sesame Street" character who lives in a trash can. The slide show advises staffers on "what to say to Oscar the Grouch."
Veterans groups call the comparison insulting, especially in the wake of a VA scandal over veterans' health care.
A VA spokeswoman says the agency did not intend to compare veterans to the grouchy Muppet and regrets any misunderstanding.