DAV Denounces White House Effort to Cut Funding for Disabled Military Retirees

Disabled American Veterans (DAV)
Monday, 13 May 2002

President Bush's fight with Congress over the defense authorization bill could mean that disabled military retirees will continue to suffer an injustice that prohibits them from receiving both disability and retirement benefits.

Among the president's objections to the measure is a provision strongly supported by the House and Senate that would overturn the century-old requirement that military retirees waive a portion of their longevity retired pay equal to the amount they receive in veterans' disability compensation.

"It is unconscionable that President Bush appears to care so little about retired members of the armed forces who were disabled as a result of their service to our nation," said George H. Steese, Jr., National Commander of the Disabled American Veterans (DAV). "There is strong support in Congress to correct this long-standing injustice toward disabled military retirees, but the president is opposed to the provision."

The House version of the defense bill would authorize $5.8 billion over five years so disabled military retirees can receive both disability and retirement benefits. The Senate is expected to authorize full concurrent receipt benefits for all disabled military longevity retirees in its version of the defense bill.

"It is grossly unfair that career military veterans must waive their retirement pay in order to receive VA disability compensation," said Commander Steese. "We must put an end to this long-standing injustice against some of America's most deserving disabled veterans. These men and women dedicated their lives to serving our nation and became disabled as a result of their service and deserve to be treated fairly."

The million-member Disabled American Veterans, a non-profit organization founded in 1920 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1932, represents this nation's disabled veterans. It is dedicated to a single purpose: building better lives for our nation's disabled veterans and their families.

For more information, or to contact Disabled American Veterans (DAV), see their website at: www.dav.org

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