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veteransrightsWASHINGTON, DC – Iowa Congressman Tom Latham on Tuesday voted in favor of bipartisan legislation to extend new help to homeless veterans.

“No one has done more to protect our liberties and freedoms than our veterans,” Congressman Latham said following the vote.  “Every American owes them a debt of solemn gratitude for their service and sacrifice. We have to make sure they’re taken care of after their tours come to an end.  That means making sure they’re given the dignity and respect they’ve earned, and it means finding new ways to ensure they have a roof over their heads during difficult times.”

The Homes for Heroes Act, HR 3298, would assign a special veterans assistant to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to make sure that veterans get full access to federal housing assistance programs provided by Congress and to facilitate greater communication and coordination between HUD and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.  The legislation also would require a yearly federal report on the status of homeless veterans.

Congressman Latham has led numerous legislative initiatives to protect and improve benefits for veterans during his service to Iowans in the U.S. House of Representatives.  For instance, he’s introduced legislation known as the VALOR Act that would allow veterans in rural areas to use their VA health benefits at local facilities.  Currently, rural veterans often must travel for hours to receive care at the nearest VA facility.

In addition, Congressman Latham has worked to pass legislation expanding benefits for members of the Guard and Reserve, and he hosted a roundtable with area employers last year focused on encouraging businesses to offer good jobs to veterans returning from deployments.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved the Homes for Heroes Act by a 414-5 vote on Tuesday. The legislation now awaits action in the U.S. Senate.

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