BY KATE O’HARE-PALMER, CHAIR
Women Veterans Day was observed on June 12. The date was chosen to mark the anniversary of the Women’s Armed Services Integration Act. Signed into law by President Harry S. Truman on June 12, 1948, the act enabled women to serve as permanent regular members of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and later, the Air Force.
The day is not recognized nationally, but is by several states, either through legislation or proclamation, and by many organizations. The goal of Women Veterans Day is to honor the service of women in the U.S. armed forces and to recognize the unique challenges that they have faced. The concept began when the New York State Assembly declared June 12, 2008, Women Veterans Recognition Day.
The Women Veterans Committee still has a few Women Veteran Honor Coins and several hundred Women Veteran Honor Pins. They can be purchased from Sharon Hodge at the national office.
The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs is working on more than two hundred bills. You can see them all at https://veterans.house.gov
Here are a few:
H.R. 1276: SAVE LIVES Act (COVID-19 vaccine availability at VA for veterans and caretakers)
Sponsor: Rep. Mark Takano (D-Calif.)
Status: Enacted—Signed by the President, March 24
H.R. 2932: To direct the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to conduct and support research on the efficacy and safety of medicinal cannabis, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-Iowa)
H.R. 2825: To direct the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to establish a registry of certain veterans who were stationed at Fort McClellan, Alabama, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.)
Status: Introduced. This is an attempt to establish a registry for Agent Orange-related illnesses that affected many of those stationed at Ft. McClellan, the training site for the Women’s Army Corps for several decades.
H.R. 2704: Improving VA Accountability to Prevent Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Act of 2021
Sponsor: Rep. Chris Pappas (D-N.H.)
Status: Ordered Reported
This committee has worked diligently and is committed to securing a better level of care and benefits for veterans. Writing committee members from your states and districts is a great way to keep in touch with them and support their accomplishments.