WASHINGTON, July 12, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today AMVETS National Executive Director Stewart Hickey applauded Congressional leaders for introducing H.R. 2654 and S. 1281, the Veterans and Service Members Employment Rights and Housing Act. The bill's introduction follows more than a year of intense campaigning on Capitol Hill by AMVETS to combat veteran discrimination.
"We are excited to see this bill introduced and are committed to continuing the fight against veterans employment and housing discrimination," said Hickey. "We are thankful to Senator Blumenthal and Representative Kilmer for their sponsorship of this important legislation."
The new bill would provide veterans and service members with the same protected status as other groups, prohibiting discrimination on the basis of military service or veteran status. Under Blumenthal and Kilmer's bill, veterans and service members facing discrimination could appeal their grievances to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Fair Housing Act would be amended to add military status as being protected under the law for service members or veterans who want to rent or purchase a home. Senator Blumenthal believes the bill will help transitioning veterans.
"Shamefully, veterans who served our country return from deployment and too often struggle to find a job or a place to call home," Blumenthal said. "By making military service a protected status, this bill will ensure that those who sacrificed to keep us safe are not discriminated against when they return home."
Representative Kilmer also believes it necessary to legally protect veterans against discrimination.
"If you fight for our country, you shouldn't have to fight for a job when you come home," said Kilmer. "I've worked with a coalition of veterans from all generations to fight for our service members and veterans at the state level and now I'm proud to work at the federal level to ensure that military status isn't used against anyone looking for a home or job. I look forward to working with Senator Blumenthal, Representative Renacci, and Representative Duckworth on this important issue."
To learn more about the American Veterans Anti-Discrimination Initiative visit www.amvets.org/american-veterans-antidiscrimination-initiative/. To contact AMVETS call 301 683-4016.
A leader since 1944 in preserving the freedoms secured by America's armed forces, AMVETS provides support for veterans and the active military in procuring their earned entitlements, as well as community service and legislative reform that enhances the quality of life for this nation's citizens and veterans alike. AMVETS is one of the largest congressionally-chartered veterans' service organizations in the United States, and includes members from each branch of the military, including the National Guard and Reserves. To learn more visit www.amvets.org.
CONTACT: Media contacts: Jay Agg, firstname.lastname@example.org, (571) 991-6998Source: AMVETS