House passes bills to provide veterans with sexual trauma support, jobs training

The House on Wednesday passed two bills that would provide veterans with support services for job training and sexual trauma.

Both of the measures, passed by voice vote, are part of the House GOP's spotlight on the Department of Veterans Affairs.

ADVERTISEMENT
One bill, H.R. 2942, would reauthorize the VA's Professional Certification and Licensure Advisory Committee, which managed licensing and certification for job training programs for veterans returning from war.

"Getting veterans into a job must remain an issue of national importance," said House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-Fla.).

Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-Ariz.), the bill's sponsor, said that many veterans return home but may not have licenses or certification for certain civilian jobs.

"In a tough job market, this creates one more barrier for our transition military men and women that can mean the difference between finding and not finding a job," Kirkpatrick said.

The Arizona Democrat said that reestablishing the committee would help more veterans find jobs upon returning home.

"In addition to teamwork, perseverance, loyalty and leadership, our military service members possess technical skills that are valuable to employers," Kirkpatrick said.

The other measure, H.R. 2527, would provide counseling and treatment for veterans who suffered sexual trauma during inactive-duty or training. Such support is offered to veterans who suffered the trauma during active duty or training, but not for inactive service.

"This omission is simply unacceptable and leaves so many who have served our country without any assistance or support during a devastating time," said bill sponsor Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nev.). 

The House passed legislation last week on a 390-33 vote to expand the VA secretary's ability to fire senior executives.