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December 16, 2020
Press Release

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Senate amendment to the bipartisan Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 (H.R. 7105) to increase access to health care and services for women veterans, provide for training opportunities for unemployed veterans, provide assistance for homeless veterans and increase oversight and accountability within the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.  The final legislation includes the Veterans Valuing our Widows and Widowers (VOW) Act (H.R.1826), introduced by Representatives Conor Lamb (PA-17) and Brian Mast (FL-18), which would ensure that the widows and widowers of Medal of Honor recipients receive the same support that was given to the veteran.

“Spouses and families sacrifice so much in support of our men and women in uniform,” said Lamb.  “We owe the families of our Medal of Honor recipients the financial security their spouse has earned.  I look forward to the President signing this commonsense, bipartisan bill into law.”

Currently, veterans who receive the Medal of Honor are entitled to an additional monthly pension.  However, when the recipient passes away the pension stops.  The VOW Act would ensure the surviving spouses of the Medal of Honor recipients continue receiving the pension that their spouse was awarded, even if the Medal of Honor is awarded posthumously.  The Medal of Honor represents the highest recognition for valor in combat that a member of the Armed Forces can earn.  It is awarded very rarely and only to those whose service and sacrifice far exceed the call of duty. 

H.R. 7105 passed the U.S. Senate with unanimous consent last week and now goes to the President for his signature.  Click here to learn more about the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020.