On July 1, Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Ranking Member Senator Jon Tester (MT), introduced Amendment 1972 to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year (FY) 2021, S. 4049. On July 13, Representative Josh Harder (CA) introduced Amendment 264 to the House NDAA for FY 2021, H.R. 6395.
Tens of thousands of veterans are still suffering from health consequences associated with Agent Orange use in Vietnam. By including Amendment 1972 in the Senate NDAA and Amendment 264 in the House NDAA, Congress will provide compensation benefits for Vietnam veterans with the serious illnesses of bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, and Parkinsonism.
Each of these diseases meets the scientific threshold of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and are linked to Agent Orange exposure. These three diseases have been pending for over three years and Congress can act now to add these conditions to the list of Agent Orange presumptive diseases.
While these amendments will not include hypertension as a presumptive disease to Agent Orange, we will continue to advocate for its inclusion and work with the Department of Veterans Affairs and Congress.
On July 14, DAV along with over 30 organizations, used their collective voices to support Amendment 1972 in the Senate and Amendment 264 in the House. We are asking you to contact your Senators and Representative to join us in this effort, so tens of thousands of Vietnam War veterans can receive justice and the benefits they deserve.
We appreciate your support for DAV and your grassroots activism. Thank you for all you do for America’s service-disabled veterans and their families.