House Advances Bills to Protect Veterans from Financial Predators, Provide Childcare at VA Facilities
WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Scott Tipton (CO-03) voted to advance bills to protect veterans from financial predators and increase access to child care for veterans receiving care at Veterans’ Affairs (VA) hospitals. Both bills, the Preventing Crimes Against Veterans Act of 2019 (H.R. 450) and The Veterans’ Access to Child Care Act (H.R. 840), passed the House with strong bipartisan votes.
“It is absolutely disgusting that there are people out there who exploit veterans when they are most vulnerable,” said Tipton. “These crimes should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and I am glad the House took steps to give the legal system the tools it needs to go after these criminals.”
Financial predators have increasingly targeted vulnerable veterans, particularly the elderly, to defraud them of their VA benefits. Under current law, it is illegal for an unauthorized person to charge a veteran a fee for assistance in receiving their benefits, but there are no repercussions for individuals who deliberately violate the law. H.R. 450 would establish a new federal crime for individuals who violate the law, imposing a fine, imprisonment, or both.
H.R. 840 makes permanent a pilot program that provides child care at VA hospitals to veterans who are receiving mental health or other intensive health care services and who also serve as the primary care taker of a child. The bill would require the VA to provide child care assistance to the veteran while they are receiving care either through a stipend, child care facilities at the VA, payment directly to a private child care agency, or a collaboration with a child care program at another federal department or agency.
“Veterans have sacrificed so much for our country, and it is important that Congress act to make this program permanent, so it will continue to have positive impacts in the lives of veterans and their families,” Tipton added.