Richmond, VA — The American Rescue Plan has delivered essential relief for military service members, veterans, and their families — and it is providing a vital path forward for the commonwealth as we recover from this pandemic. As highlighted by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the ARP provides over $17 billion to help ensure that veterans have access to quality health care, protections against COVID-19, and critical economic relief. These provisions will be critically important to Virginia’s economic recovery, with the commonwealth having one of the highest populations of veterans in the country.
The American Rescue Plan will also provide:
- Resources for health care debt forgiveness
- Funds for housing improvements for vulnerable veterans
- Help for veterans to resolve claims and VA appeals and receive compensation and services faster
- Support for veterans experiencing unemployment
- Stimulus payments, increased child tax credit, and expanded childcare tax credits for veterans with children
- Grants for small businesses owned and controlled by Veterans
- Critical assistance in the form of a robust job-training program to help thousands of veterans who lost their jobs due to COVID-19
Today, ahead of Memorial Day Weekend, DPVA and veteran leaders across Virginia released the following statements:
DPVA Chair Susan Swecker
“The American Rescue Plan is providing critical relief to veterans across the commonwealth -- and it has been essential to Virginia's economic recovery. Meanwhile, Glenn Youngkin and Republicans in Congress have opposed and attacked this crucial relief every step of the way. Virginia Republicans have made it clear: they will put politics and obstruction ahead of recovery and help for Virginia's veterans.”
Congresswoman Elaine Luria
"With the passage and roll out of the American Rescue Plan, help is here for our veterans, small businesses owners, and hard-working families. Throughout my first term in Congress, I have made veterans and their families a priority and I will continue to work to ensure that veterans throughout Coastal Virginia and the commonwealth receive the benefits and care they have rightfully earned."
Senate Majority Leader Dick Saslaw
“This year, Democrats in the General Assembly took important steps to help Virginia veterans recover from the pandemic, passing a new measure to help reduce veteran unemployment and help transitioning service members find jobs. The American Rescue Plan provides billions of dollars in funding that will help veterans get the health care and job training they need to get back on track. Democrats are committed to fulfilling our country's promises to those who bravely served, and the American Rescue Plan will make sure all our veterans across the commonwealth and country are part of a strong economic recovery."
Charley Conrad, Senior Chief Quartermaster US Navy, Retired
“Veterans, service members, and their families were hit particularly hard by COVID-19, and I'm glad that Democrats stepped up to make relief for this community a priority. I served our country in the Navy for twenty years, and it was tragic to see our Navy suffer one of the worst initial COVID outbreaks in the armed forces. The men and women who serve deserve real relief so they can get the health care, economic assistance, and job training they need to get back on track as we recover from the pandemic. That's exactly what the American Rescue Plan provides, and I'm proud that Democrats have delivered."
Del. David A. Reid, Co-Chair Military-Veterans Caucus
“As we approach Memorial Day and recognize those that have made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation, I would like to thank President Biden and Congress for their leadership in passing the American Rescue Plan Act. By including a broad range of support to veterans in the ARP Act, we are honoring their service to the nation, their commitment to protecting our freedoms, and are making their lives better in their time of greatest need.”
Del. Don Scott
“If we want to build a stronger economy and get Virginia on the right track as fast as possible, we have to invest in programs to make sure veterans get the help they need. That's exactly what the American Rescue Plan does. From housing assistance to small business loans and investments in health care provision, this legislation will be critical to including Virginia's veterans and their families in our economic recovery. With so many standing to benefit, it's shameful that Republicans across the commonwealth have opposed the ARP from the start. Meanwhile Democrats will continue to fight for and deliver relief to those who have served our country."