Immediate Action Required: Contact your representative and Senators and ask them to co-sponsor H.R.1384 and S. 743, bills to provide veteran status to members of the Reserve Component.
Please contact your representatives and Senators to urge them to co-sponsor bills H.R. 1384 and S.743, companion bills that recognize service in the Reserve Components with veteran status. Rep. Timothy Walz, D-Minn., is the original sponsor in the House and Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., is the original sponsor in the Senate.
Many members of Congress may not know that a reservist can complete a full Guard or Reserve career but not earn the title of “Veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States” unless the member has served on Title 10 active duty for other than training purposes.
Currently, the U.S.C. Title 38 excludes from the definition of “veteran” career reservists who have not served on Title 10 active duty for other than training purposes. Title 32 drill training, annual training, and all vital operations and emergency response to terrorism and natural disasters under Chapter 502(f) are currently not considered qualifying service for veteran status.
Yet, active duty members whose enlistment tours, which can be short and spent in less rigorous assignments to bases and wings on Title 10 status, will fully qualify not just for veteran status, but for all veterans’ benefits. This disparity is unfair.
• Reserve component members who served 20 years standing ready to be sent anywhere in the world but, through no fault of their own, were never deployed could refer to themselves as veterans
• A double standard should not exist that denies veteran status to the reserve component for 20 years of honorable domestic service, but awards veterans status and full benefits to active duty soldiers who serve shorter term Title 10 active duty tours
• Authorizing veteran status for career RC service would boost the morale of the RC members and their families
TAKE THE FOLLOWING ACTION:
By using the Write to Congress feature on the NGAUS website at www.ngaus.org, you can IMMEDIATELY email your elected representatives. A sample letter is included in Write to Congress. You can email the prewritten message or edit the sample letter as you desire. This is the quickest and most effective method of expressing your views to Congress. Also, contact your friends and family members and urge them to use Write to Congress as well. For further information and background visit our website at www.ngaus.org. Please direct any questions concerning this issue to Pete Duffy, NGAUS legislative director, at 202-454-5307 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.