San Diego’s military and veteran community is central to the fabric of our region, and Scott is one of Congress’ strongest advocates for veterans, both in San Diego and throughout the country. He introduced the Shelter Our Servicemembers Act, which establishes a grant pilot program, administered through the Dept. of Housing & Urban Development and the Dept. of Veterans Affairs, to provide senior veterans permanent, non-transitional housing and wraparound services provided by local nonprofit organizations.
Veterans deserve quality medical treatment for all health issues in a timely manner, be they physical or mental. That’s why Scott has supported several bills and amendments to expand medical access for veterans and their families. Scott’s office has worked tirelessly to connect our veterans with the medical treatment and benefits they deserve but too often have trouble obtaining.
Scott cosponsored the Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act, which allows full concurrent receipt of Combat-Related Special Compensation (CRSC) and Concurrent Retirement and Disability Payments (CRDP) for nearly all vets with service-related injuries, regardless of their length of service and whether the injury was incurred during combat or combat-related activities.
Scott also cosponsored the Veterans Mental Health Accessibility Act, which would eliminate the 5-year window and allow veterans who served in combat from all military operations to seek treatment for service-connected mental illnesses, regardless of when their conditions manifest themselves.
Scott voted for an amendment calling for the Secretary of Defense to develop a plan to ensure a sustainable flow of qualified mental health counselors to meet the long-term needs of members of the Armed Forces, veterans, and their families.
Scott voted for a bill that would authorize $237 million in FY14 for VA leases at 27 major medical facilities around the country, ensuring that VA facilities in San Diego received the funding to stay open.
Scott voted for the Veterans Economic Opportunity Act, which would create a new office within the Veterans Administration to administer a variety of services for veterans. This office would administer vocational, educational and other assistance programs for veterans, clarify foreclosure and refinancing protections for veterans, extend certain homeless veterans reintegration programs, expand education benefits for certain survivors of deceased servicemembers, and protect the rights of active-duty members of the military in child custody cases when the servicemember is deployed.
Veterans who choose to pursue higher education when they return home deserve our full support, which is why Scott has cosponsored the GI Bill Tuition Fairness Act of 2013, a bill ensuring that all veterans who attend college on the post-9/11 GI Bill are allowed to do so at in-state tuition rates and are not punished for faithfully fulfilling their military service obligations away from their original state of residency.
Scott was a cosponsor of the Veterans’ Entry to Apprenticeship Act, which would allow eligible veterans to use their educational benefits to pay for pre-apprenticeship programs.
Scott also cosponsored the GI Education Benefits Fairness Act, a bill that would amend veterans benefits so that both the Dept. of Defense and the VA include foster children and wards in the definition of “child” to allow these children to receive their G.I. Bill benefits.
No American serving in the Armed Forces should be discriminated against because of their sexual orientation, and that’s why Scott was an original cosponsor of the Restore Honor to Service Members Act, which would ensure that members of the Armed Forces who served honorably, but were discharged and given a punitive discharge classification solely because of their sexual orientation, have their records corrected to reflect their honorable service. This will allow them to access all the benefits normally given to our veterans.
In the wake of the terrorist attacks on Americans in Libya, Scott cosponsored a bill which would posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, two former Navy SEAL members who sacrificed their lives on September 11, 2012, while serving as part of a U.S. diplomatic security detachment in Libya.