The Associates Vietnam Veterans of America Government AffairsCommittee is committed to providing timely information on issues that are specific to veterans and their families requiring support and advocacy. This ommittee keeps pertinent legislation in the forefront of our congressional leaders, while encouraging our members to become proactive by contacting their elected officials via phone or e-mail to keep the needs of our veterans and their families in the limelight as relevant acts impacting our membership are considered. AVVA members are voters, and together we are nearly 9000 members strong.
Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America - Legislative Update
December 12, 2016
Senate passes Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015
On Saturday, December 10, 2016, H.R. 6416, the Miller-Blumenthal Veterans Health Care and Benefits Act of 2016, unanimously passed the Senate and is now on the way to the President's Desk for signature into law. Among the 76 separate provisions of the bill are measures aimed at improving veterans' access to care, benefits, education, and homeless assistance.
Also included in the legislation are the provisions of the Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015, the Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America top legislative priority.
My heartfelt congratulations go to all of you who answered the call and took action activating your communities, and working with your representatives on Capitol Hill. Through your relentless perseverance, your voices have been heard.
This legislation, a necessary first step, will lay the groundwork for the research we need on the health of our children and grandchildren, whom we believe, have been impacted by exposures during their parents’ military service.
AVVA, also thank Senators Moran-KS and Blumenthal-CT for introducing the bill in the Senate S.901 and Representatives Benishek (MI-1) and Honda (CA-17) for introducing the bill in the House H.R. 1769 and their colleagues on both sides for ensuring that this bipartisan legislation was enacted into law.
This is a milestone. Stand by. Our work is not done.
AVVA National President
Currently in Congress
Associates of Vietnam Veterans of America
September 5-9, 2016
The U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate are in session
The legislative language of S.901, the Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015, introduced by Senators Jerry Moran (KS) and Richard Blumenthal (CT), has been included in S.2921, the Veterans First Act, under Title II, Subtitle I, “Research and Toxic Exposure”. Senators Johnny Isakson (GA), Chairman, and Richard Blumenthal (CT), Ranking Member, Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs introduced S.2921.
The bill has 44 cosponsors (16 R- 28 D)
Dan Sullivan (AK), John Boozman (AR), Barbara Boxer (CA), Dianne Feinstein, (CA) Michael F. Bennet
AVVA Legislative Priorities for 2016:
Click here to read the AVVA Legislative Priorities for this year. There is a great deal of baground informaiton as well, which will help you in your efforts to support these issues.
BASIC GUIDE TO ADVOCACY:
Click here for a Power Point guide designed to help you successfully advocate for Veterans' issues. (Depending on your browser, this may automatically download to your computer, or may open in your screen.)
Click here for an easy to follow listing of information that will make contacting congress as easy as 1 2 3!
On April 16, 2016, Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) made an unannounced visit to the VVA Chapter 317, Kansas City, “Faces of Agent Orange” Town Hall. Click the red text above for a transcript of his uplifting address regarding the Toxic Exposure Research Act, S.901.
FIND YOUR CONGRESS MEMBER OR LOOK UP LEGISLATION:
Go to VVA's Government Affairs Action Center to keep up on current legislative action and information.
VECI Report: (Sept. 2015)
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced the expansion of a program aimed at increasing education and employment opportunities to America’s Veterans to an additional to 25 new communities. The Veterans Economic Communities Initiative (VECI) brings together local and national partners to coordinate services for Veterans, service members and military families.