Murphy Measure to Hire More Veterans Passes House; Set to Become Law
Measure increases funding for the Wounded Warrior Program, which provides two-year paid fellowships in U.S. House offices for disabled veterans
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a government funding package that includes a bipartisan measure co-led by U.S. Representatives Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla. and Brian Mast, R-Fla., to help disabled military veterans transition to the civilian workforce. Specifically, the measure increases funding for the House of Representatives’ Wounded Warrior Program, which provides two-year paid fellowships for disabled veterans to work as staffers for Members of Congress. There are currently about 50 veterans working in House offices through the Wounded Warrior Program, and this new funding will help the program reach its ultimate goal of supporting over 100 paid fellowships. The government funding package that contains Murphy’s measure was also approved by the Senate yesterday, and it will now be sent to the President to be signed into law.
This will be the 14th Murphy-led measure to become law since she took office in January 2017. Another 12 measures she is spearheading have been approved by the House
“The unique skills and experience acquired by veterans over the course of their military service can be invaluable to the work of a congressional office,” said Murphy. “The Wounded Warrior fellowship program is critical not only because we have a moral imperative to help our military servicemembers successfully transition to civilian life, but also because it gives veterans the opportunity to use the valuable skills they honed in the military to help constituents, including fellow veterans, in congressional districts across the country. As someone who has two Marines on staff, I know Congress will benefit greatly from the expansion of this fellowship.”
The Murphy-Mast amendment increases funding for the Wounded Warrior Program by $250,000, from $2.75 million to $3.0 million. In addition to Murphy and Mast, U.S. Representatives Dan Kildee, D-Mich., and Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, co-led the amendment.
Wounded Warrior fellowships enable disabled veterans to gain professional experience and develop their skills while they determine their long-term career interests and goals. Participating veterans perform a variety of duties, including legislative work and constituent advocacy. As a result of their military service, fellows can provide important support to Member offices, especially on defense and veterans issues. To qualify for the program, an applicant must be an honorably discharged veteran released from active duty within the last five years. The applicant must also have a 20 percent or greater service-connected disability or be a Purple Heart recipient. For more information on the Wounded Warrior Program, click here.
Murphy has made empowering military veterans one of her top priorities in Congress. Recently, the core of her bill, the Battle for Servicemembers Act, was passed into law. This legislation reforms the Department of Defense’s Transition Assistance Program and helps the nearly 250,000 servicemembers who leave the military every year be better prepared to go to college, learn a trade, or start a small business.