HENDERSON, Ky (WEHT) – According to a press release from the office of U.S. Senator Mike Braun (R-In.), a bipartisan bill was signed into law by President Biden that benefits the children of Vietnam War veterans exposed to Agent Orange.
The bill previously passed the Senate unanimously on July 13. Senator Braun was one of the leaders of the bill, alongside New Hampshire Senator Maggie Hassan. Indiana Senator Todd Young (R) was among the bill’s co-sponsors. The House version of the bill was led by Representative Jim Baird (R), who represents Indiana’s 4th Congressional district.
According to the release, many Vietnam veterans were exposed to the defoliant known as Agent Orange during their service, and children born to these veterans have a higher risk of spina bifida. The release says that of the estimated 1,500 veterans’ children suffering from this condition, less than half are enrolled in the Veterans Affairs’ Spina Bifida program.
Under this bill, the VA will reach out to beneficiaries to make sure they get the benefits they are eligible for. These benefits will also now last for the life of the child. The benefits include not only medical care, but also assistance with daily living.
“This law will ensure that the children of Vietnam veterans born with spina bifida due to a parent’s exposure to Agent Orange will get the care and benefits they deserve for the rest of their lives,” says Senator Braun. “I’m proud to have led this valuable bipartisan bill into law and look forward to helping these veterans’ kids.”