06.27.07

Burr’s Veterans Homelessness Bill Approved Today by Veterans Affairs Committee as Part of Comprehensive Veterans Package

Today Senator Richard Burr's Services to Prevent Veterans Homelessness Act of 2007, S.874, was approved by the Veterans Affairs Committee as part of the Veterans Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation Act of 2007, S.1233. Burr's legislation provides supportive services to keep low-income veterans in permanent housing so they do not become homeless. It will increase veterans' access to assistance for housing, physical and mental health services, health insurance, and vocational and financial counseling.

"We must honor our veterans' service to our country and make certain that these soldiers are not forgotten when they return home," Burr said. "It is deplorable that some of our veterans are homeless and many more live in extreme poverty. This legislation will help to give veterans the benefits they deserve."

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 1.5 million of our Nation's veterans live in poverty. North Carolina is home to over 770,000 veterans. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, it is estimated that there are over 40,000 North Carolina veterans living below the national poverty level.

The Veterans Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation Act of 2007 provides and enhances services to treat veterans with traumatic brain injury and expands health services for all veterans. Burr's legislation focuses on the national goal of ending homelessness among veterans and for the first time creates programs designed to prevent veteran homelessness before it occurs.

"I hope the U.S. Senate acts quickly to pass this legislation," Burr added.

Burr serves on the Veterans Affairs Committee in the U.S. Senate. He originally introduced his Services to Prevent Veterans Homelessness legislation in November 2005. The bill was re-introduced in March 2007 for consideration in the 110th Congress.