August 04, 2017

Wyden, Boozman, Markey Bill to Ensure Equal Treatment for Wounded Guard and Reserve Members Goes to President’s Desk

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., John Boozman, R-Ark., and Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., today announced their bipartisan legislation to restore GI benefits to members of the Guard and Reserve is headed to the president’s desk as part of the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act, also known as the Forever GI Bill.  

The GI Bill Fairness Act passed the Senate this week as part of the Forever GI bill, a broader package to improve veterans’ education benefits and enhance the post-9/11 GI Bill. 

The Wyden-Boozman-Markey provision will ensure members of the Guard and Reserve are eligible for Post-9/11 GI Bill education assistance under the type of orders they are often given for their recovery and rehabilitation if they are wounded in combat. Previously, wounded Guard and Reserve could actually lose benefits for being injured in the line of duty, unlike active duty members of the military.

“Members of the military should never lose benefits for getting injured in the line of duty,” Wyden said. “Our bipartisan bill will now become the law of the land and correct this glaring injustice for men and women serving in the National Guard and Reserve.”

“It’s hard to believe, but members of the Guard and Reserve, unlike other members of the military, actually lose benefits for being injured in the line of duty. This legislation rights this wrong to ensure that injured members of the Guard and Reserve receive the educational assistance they have earned, bringing them parity with their active duty counterparts,” Boozman said.

“The men and women who risk their lives for our country overseas should be honored for their sacrifice, whether they serve in the regular Army, the National Guard, or the Reserve,” Markey said. “I am proud to see Congress stand together in support of all these brave members of the military who serve us.”

The broader bill that included the GI Bill Fairness Act passed the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs at the end of July. It passed the House of Representatives unanimously on July 24.

Read the full text of the bill here.