VA reform continues to be at the forefront of the political landscape as Representative Charlie Crist focuses on fixing how the VA handles veterans affected by Agent Orange.
Along with other lawmakers, Crist presented the “Agent Orange Exposure Fairness Act.”
Crist’s office noted that the bill “requires the Department of Veterans Affairs to adhere to an expedited process to expand Agent Orange coverage for new illnesses linked to exposure by the National Academy of Sciences, automatically providing benefits to veterans exposed to Agent Orange suffering from designated conditions.”
And, speaking on the bill, Crist commented that “When a veteran’s medical condition is determined to be linked to their exposure to Agent Orange, they should not have their benefits tied up in bureaucratic red tape. I urge Congress to take swift action on this bipartisan, bicameral bill to help our Vietnam veterans receive the care and benefits they deserve that for too many have been delayed or denied.”
In addition, the Veterans of Foreign Wars supports the bill.
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Carlos Fuentes, the national legislative service director for the Veterans of Foreign Wars, detailed that “It is unacceptable that VA has failed to act on the National Academy of Medicine report linking bladder cancer and other conditions to Agent Orange exposure. VA’s inaction has denied thousands of veterans the benefits they deserve and has forced many of them to accumulate debt to cover the cost of health care for conditions which have been scientifically proven to be associated with their exposure to Agent Orange. The VFW thanks Congressman Crist for his leadership on this issue and is proud to support H.R. 6941, which will correct this injustice.”