It would shorten the time they need to be eligible for medical services.
Washington DC (KM) Disabled veterans would not have to wait so long in order to receive medical care under a bill introduced last week in the House of Representatives. The legislation sponsored by Congressmen John Delaney (D-Md) and Walter Jones (R-NC) would allow veterans who have been working for six to eight months after they’ve left military service to be eligible to take leave to get medical treatment they need for service-related injuries.
“Right now, they have to wait about a year in their employment to take family medical leave to take care of an injury, perhaps related to their service in our country,” says Delaney.
The Delaney-Jones legislation provides for Family Medical Leave Act protections for veterans who been employed for eight months after leaving the military, and who have a disability rating of 30-50%, and six-months for those with a disability rating of over 50%. “So what we’re really trying to do is provide flexibility to our veterans while they integrate back into the workforce,” says Delaney.
He says legislation like this is needed. “What we’re seeing is our veterans, many of them, unfortunately have had significant injuries, requiring care for these injuries which are often kind of chronic and recurring conditions,” says Delaney.
“Our disabled veterans should not have to wait an entire year to receive the medical lave they need,” says Congressman Jones, in a statement. “Thank you to Congressman Delaney and my fellow colleagues for lessening the burden of transition to civilian life and cosponsoring this important piece of legislation.”
Delaney says this bill also has the support of many veterans groups, including the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and Disabled American Veterans. “This bill is trying to be specific about situations that our veterans are under,” he says. “Fortunately, it’s very bipartisan.”
He says the legislation has more than two dozen co-sponsors.
Delaney says it would apply to large and medium size companies, and government agencies, including the federal government. Small businesses would be exempt, he says.
By Kevin McManus