Blue Water Navy Act passes the House

Bob Sisson - 5/22/2019

House Passes Blue Water Navy Act: By a vote of 410-0, the House on Tuesday unanimously passed H.R. 299, the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019. "The VFW salutes the united support of the House,” said VFW National Commander B.J. Lawrence. "Your vote will positively impact thousands of lives, and it once again proves that taking care of veterans and their families is a nonpartisan issue.” Once signed into law, H.R. 299 will restore VA benefits to thousands of so-called Blue Water Navy Vietnam veterans who had their disability eligibility taken away after regulatory changes. Veterans exposed to Agent Orange while serving along the Korean DMZ will have an earlier start date to encompass the time frame when various defoliants were tested — from April 1, 1968, to Sept. 1, 1967. Benefits will expand to include children born with spina bifida due to a parent’s exposure in Thailand, as well as require VA to report on research being conducted on a broad range of conditions possibly related to service in Southwest Asia. The bill now moves to the Senate, which "failed to pass H.R. 299 in the previous Congress,” said Lawrence. "We cannot allow this to happen again, which is why I am urging every veteran, family member and advocate to contact their U.S. senators to get this bill passed and signed into law now!”