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Currently showing results in the 116th Congress.

  • Tester, Rounds Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Establish Grant Program Honoring Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) introduced the Memorializing Veterans Act today, bipartisan legislation establishing a grant program to help honor the lives of our nation's veterans. The Veterans' Legacy Program (VLP) is an educational initiative from the National Cemetery Administration (NCA) under U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) which commemorates veterans interred in NCA cemeteries through partnerships with institutions of higher learning...

  • Tester, Sullivan Veteran Suicide Prevention Bill Heads to President’s Desk

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) are today celebrating the unanimous passage of the Support for Suicide Prevention Coordinators Act a bipartisan, bicameral effort to help tackle one of the nation's most pressing health concerns- veteran suicide. The Senators' legislation requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to report on the responsibilities, workload, training, and vacancy rates of Suicide Prevention Coordinators at the Department of V...

  • Tester Statement on Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester, Ranking Member and Montana's only member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today released the following statement in honor of National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day: "78 years ago, Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor thrust the United States into World War II, marking 'a date which will live in infamy.' Beginning that day, Americans made tremendous sacrifices for our freedom, earning a place in history as this nation's Greatest Generation. Many of the...

  • Tester, Collins, Casey, Daines Fight to Protect Veterans from Predatory Pension Poachers

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Bob Casey (D-Pa.), and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) introduced legislation this week requiring the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to systematically track victims, scammers, and trends to proactively protect veterans and survivors across the country from predatory pension poachers. Our nation's aging veterans represent a segment of vulnerable individuals increasingly targeted by bad actors preying on the VA pension ben...

  • On Senate Floor, Ranking Member Tester Pays Tribute to Chairman Isakson’s Service to Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Jon Tester (D-Mont.) took to the Senate floor yesterday to pay tribute to Chairman Johnny Isakson's (R-Ga.) 45-year political career, legislative accomplishments, and their continued friendship. "The reason we're all here today is because Johnny Isakson is a very special guy and he's special for a number of reasons," Tester said. "He treats everybody with respect and because of that, everybody treats him with respect&helli...

  • Tester, Colleagues Spearhead Legislation to Improve Transportation Services for Rural Veterans

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) are spearheading bipartisan legislation to help rural veterans travel to and from their medical appointments more easily. The Senators introduced the Rural Veterans Travel Enhancement Act of 2019 today, which will expand successful initiatives that provide veterans living in rural areas transportation services and reimbursemen...

  • Tester Urges Timely and Confidential Mental Health Care for Servicemembers in Need

    (Big Sandy, Mont.) - Following reports of delayed care, Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Jon Tester (D-Mont.) is urging the Department of Defense (DoD) to provide timely and confidential health care for servicemembers suffering from mental health conditions. Reports show that servicemembers often do not receive timely care after identifying mental health concerns to providers. In one recent case, a servicemember detailed his personal experience with the Defense Health ...

  • Tester Pushes VA to Better Serve Montana’s Native Veterans at Indian Affairs Committee Hearing

    (U.S. Senate) - At a Senate Committee on Indian Affairs hearing, U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.) questioned representatives from Montana Tribes and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) on their efforts to address the unique needs of Native American veterans. While Native American veterans serve in the military at a higher rate than any other ethnic demographic in the United States, they often face obstacles when seeking housing, employment, and quality health care. During the hearing...

  • Tester, Colleagues Introduce First-Ever Bipartisan Bill to Protect Student Veterans from Predatory For-Profit Institutions

    (U.S. Senate) - Closing out the week of Veterans Day, U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) introduced the Protect Veterans' Education and Training Spending (Protect VETS) Act of 2019 to protect student veterans from predatory for-profit institutions. The Protect VETS Act is the first bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate that would protect military and veteran students by closing the 90/10 loophole and requiring for-profit...

  • On Senate Floor, Tester Calls on Trump Administration to ‘Do the right thing’ by Expanding List of Medical Conditions for Veterans Exposed to Agent Orange

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee yesterday called on the Trump Administration to take action on behalf of thousands of Vietnam Veterans across the country by expanding the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) list of medical conditions associated with exposure to Agent Orange to include Parkinsonism, Bladder Cancer, Hypertension, and Hypothyroidism. Tester took to the Senate floor in support of an effort to expand the l...

  • Tester on Veterans Day: ‘We have a responsibility to those who protect our freedom’

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senator Jon Tester, Ranking Member and Montana's only member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, today released the following statement to commemorate Veterans Day: "On Veterans Day, we pause to remember our veterans, and honor the enduring sacrifice of our men and women in uniform, as well as their families. They represent the very best of this country, and their sacrifices have come at a high cost. There are lives lost, physical injuries, and far too often, unseen ...

  • Tester, Moran Lead Bipartisan Call to Action for Better Patient Safety and Oversight at VA Facilities

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) are leading eight colleagues in a bipartisan call to action following alarming incidents of veterans receiving inadequate care or mistreatment at the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) medical facilities. In a letter to VA Secretary Wilkie today, the Senators voiced their concerns over serious, high-profile cases of veteran abuse and employee misconduct within VA facilities across the country. "We are concerned abo...

  • ‘Stop turning your backs on Vietnam vets who are suffering’ Tester, Colleagues Slam Acting White House Chief Mulvaney

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and his colleagues are refusing to back down from their fight to ensure Vietnam veterans suffering from toxic exposure to Agent Orange receive necessary benefits and care from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Tester led four colleagues on the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee in a letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) today urging Director and Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to stop blocking the inclusio...

  • Tester, Colleagues Condemn Administration for Ignoring Vietnam Veterans Suffering from Agent Orange

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-Mont.), colleagues on the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee, and veterans service organizations (VSOs) are condemning the Trump Administration following released documents revealing that the White House blocked efforts by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to expand the list of presumptive health outcomes for Vietnam veterans suffering from service-connected exposure to Agent Orange. According to internal documents obtained by a ...

  • Tester Invites Air Force Secretary to Montana Following Senate Confirmation

    (U.S. Senate) - Following his vote to confirm President Trump's nominee to serve as Secretary of the Air Force, U.S. Senator Jon Tester is inviting Secretary Barbara Barrett to Great Falls to discuss critical United States Air Force priorities in Montana. "Congratulations on your confirmation as the 25th Secretary of the United States Air Force," wrote Tester. "You are taking the helm of one of our nation's most important military institutions at a critical time, and I look forward to working ...

  • Tester, Bennet, Moran Lead Bipartisan Push to Address Alarming Increase in National Guard Suicide Rate

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) today led a bipartisan call for the Department of Defense (DoD) to address the increasing suicide rate among members of the National Guard. Recent suicide reports conducted by the DoD found that the suicide mortality rate for the National Guard is consistently higher than that of Active Duty and Reserve members. In a letter to the Office of Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readi...

  • Tester Challenges VA to Aggressively Combat Veteran Suicide Crisis Following Reported Increase

    (U.S. Senate) - Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Jon Tester (D-Mont.) is leading six colleagues in challenging the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to aggressively increase its efforts to connect veterans in Montana and across the country with critical mental health care. Last month, VA released new data detailing an increase in suicide rates among veterans in 2017. In their letter, the Senators today pressed VA Secretary Wilkie to implement proactive measures aimed ...

  • New Veterans Clinic Headed to Missoula After Tester Efforts

    (Big Sandy, Mont.) - Missoula will receive a new Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) for veterans after sustained efforts from U.S. Senator Jon Tester. The new clinic, which Tester fought to secure in bipartisan legislation passed by the Senate in 2017, will serve more than 47,000 veterans in the area and allow the VA to expand its current Primary Care, Mental Health, and Specialty Care services. "This new clinic is welcome news for Missoula's veterans-who will now have access to cutting-e...

  • Tester Demands Immediate Action for Veterans Suffering from Toxic Exposure: ‘Enough is Enough’

    (U.S. Senate) - At a Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee oversight hearing today, Ranking Member Jon Tester urged the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Defense (DoD) to work with greater urgency to ensure current and future veterans exposed to harmful toxins in the line of duty are able to access benefits and care to which they are entitled. Tester demanded that VA take immediate action by expanding the Department's list of presumptive medical conditions to include Hypot...

  • Tester, Isakson Applaud Senate Passage of Legislation to Continue Essential Veterans Services & Benefits

    (U.S. Senate) - U.S. Senators Jon Tester, (D-Mont.), and Johnny Isakson, (R-Ga.), ranking member and chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, applauded the unanimous Senate passage of bipartisan legislation to ensure veterans continue to have access to essential programs at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The legislation now heads to the president's desk to be signed into law. The Department of Veterans Affairs Expiring Authorities Act of 2019 reauthorizes four progr...

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