Brindisi-backed Agent Orange bill passes House

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A bill to make earned benefits available to veterans who served in the territorial waters off the shores of Vietnam and Korea during the use of the notorious defoliant Agent Orange has passed the House, Congressman Anthony Brindisi, D-22nd Dist., announced.

The bill is known as the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019. It seeks to extend the presumption of Agent Orange exposure to U.S. Navy veterans who served in the territorial waters of Vietnam or near the Korean Demilitarized Zone. It also would extend eligibility for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs benefits to certain children with spina bifida who were born to veterans who served in Thailand and were exposed to Agent Orange.

Brindisi is a member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

“The Greater Rome-Utica Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America greatly appreciates Congressman Brindisi’s hard work, dedication, and strong support for our Vietnam, Blue Water Navy veterans,” said Rome veteran and member of GRUC-MOAA Bill Hamelin.

“It has been over 40 years that over 90,000 veterans have been denied the right to medical care and compensation for illnesses, diseases, and in many cases death, from the exposure to Agent Orange while serving their country.”

The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration.

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