Tester Hears 2021 Legislative Priorities from The American Legion

At annual legislative presentation from leading Veterans Service Organizations, Chairman stresses critical need to address vaccine hesitancy among vets

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(U.S. Senate) – Chairman Jon Tester of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee today oversaw a joint Senate and House Committees on Veterans’ Affairs’ hearing to discuss the legislative priorities of The American Legion and other leading Veterans Service Organizations for this year.

During the hearing, Tester stressed the critical need to secure additional COVID-19 vaccines for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and address vaccine hesitancy among veterans. 

“We need to ensure that every single veteran understands the importance of being vaccinated and has the opportunity to do so,” said Chairman Tester. “But to do this, we need your help. You need to help spread the word that the vaccine is safe, and is the best way to protect your members and their families. This is the only way we will get beyond this pandemic, and get our communities and our economy back on track.”

The American Legion affirmed their commitment to helping the Committee spearhead various initiatives to strengthen VA health care and infrastructure, improve mental health care resources, reduce the veterans’ claims and appeals backlog, find common ground on toxic exposure issues, and safeguard veterans’ education benefits during the pandemic.

The second panel included presentations from the Vietnam Veterans of America, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Jewish War Veterans, Wounded Warriors Project, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, and Military Order of the Purple Heart. 

Tester’s opening statement as prepared for delivery can be found HERE.

Tester’s full Q&A is available HERE.