Veterans' Affairs

The bravery and devotion veterans have shown throughout our history have helped build this great country, and each of us owes them—and their families—a debt of gratitude.

Congressman Cohen believes the federal government has a responsibility to ensure that veterans receive all of the benefits they have earned.

In furtherance of this, Congressman Cohen continues to work with the Memphis VA Medical Center (VAMC) to ensure that our veterans are receiving both appropriate and excellent care at the Memphis VA. Congressman Cohen has also introduced the Putting Our Veterans Back to Work Act. This bill reauthorizes the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Labor’s Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP), which provided up to 12 months of training assistance to nearly 76,000 eligible unemployed veterans between July 2012 when it rolled out and March 2014 when it expired.  The bill also directs the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Attorney General to award grants to hire veterans as firefighters and law enforcement officers.  The legislation is supported by the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans and the Military Officers Association of America.

The Congressman is a cosponsor of the Veteran Urgent Access to Mental Healthcare Act which provides initial mental health assessments and urgent mental health care services to veterans at risk of suicide or harming others, as well as the Military and Veteran Caregiver Services Improvement Act. This bipartisan bill expands the eligibility for the Department of Veterans Affairss family caregiver program to include families of veterans who were seriously injured or became ill prior to September 11, 2001.

Congressman Cohen has cosponsored the Reduce Unemployment for Veterans of All Ages Act to lift the arbitrary 12-year limit to qualify for the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) Program, a program to help veterans with service-connected disabilities obtain and keep meaningful employment and achieve maximum independence through job training, employment accommodations, resume development and job seeking skills coaching.

Congressman Cohen is also a cosponsor of a bill to require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to furnish dental care in the same manner as any other medical service.

The Congressman Cohen has also cosponsored the Medical Cannabis Research Act to increases the number of manufactures registered under the Controlled Substances Act to manufacture cannabis for legitimate research purposes and authorizes health care providers of the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide recommendations to veterans regarding participation in federally-approved cannabis clinical trials, and the VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act to authorize the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to conduct and support research on the efficacy and safety of certain forms of cannabis and cannabis delivery for veterans enrolled in the VA health care system diagnosed with conditions such as chronic pain or post-traumatic stress disorder.

More on Veterans' Affairs

July 29, 2021 Press Release

 

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) tonight voted for a seven-bill “minibus” that includes major increases in spending for SNAP, WIC, school nutrition programs, the Small Business Administration, consumer protection agencies, veterans affairs and veterans medical services, rental assistance, housing for the elderly and transit programs. It also includes funding for many of his highest priority community project requests:

 

May 28, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) released the following statement today in recognition of Memorial Day on Monday:

May 26, 2021 Press Release

improvement projects

March 24, 2021 Press Release

 

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), Chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, today presided at a hearing on “the Need to Expand Eligibility Under the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act.” The hearing explored the impact of downwind and other radiation exposure from nuclear bomb testing and uranium mining and other uranium workers during the Second World War and during the Cold War, and the need to compensate the many victims not currently eligible under RECA.

March 16, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today applauded that elements of his Protecting Our Students and Taxpayers (POST) Act were included in the American Recovery Plan Act that President Biden signed into law last week. Introduced with Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, the measure will help put an end to the for-profit college industry’s aggressive recruiting of veterans, service members, and their families.  

February 23, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) and Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois today introduced bicameral legislation that would help put an end to the for-profit college industry’s aggressive recruiting of veterans, service members, and their families.  The Protecting Our Students and Taxpayers (POST) Act would prohibit for-profit colleges and universities from receiving more than 85 percent of their revenue from the federal government and change the calculation of federal revenue to include all federal funds, including Department of Veterans Affairs GI Bill and Department of Defense Tuitio

February 4, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today introduced a bill to provide preference to local contractors for work on or services provided at Department of Veterans Affairs facilities. The measure would benefit local economies by retaining companies that support local incomes.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement:

January 19, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee, today expressed his appreciation and gratitude for the work of the U.S. Capitol Police, National Guard troops and federal and local law enforcement officials in ensuring the safety of the President-elect and Vice President-elect, Members of Congress, dignitaries and the public in preparation for Wednesday’s historic Inaugural events.

January 11, 2021 Press Release

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today congratulated the Memphis Veterans Affairs Medical Center for being named one of 12 in the nation selected to establish a Fisher House so that families of Veterans can be close to their loved ones during hospitalization. Congressman Cohen wrote a letter strongly supporting the medical center’s efforts during the evaluation process.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement:

December 28, 2020 Press Release

 

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today joined his colleagues in a bipartisan vote overriding the President’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act. The measure contains vital provisions for our service members, addresses Vietnam-era veterans dealing with exposure to Agent Orange, and begins the process for removing the names of Confederate officials in the Civil War from our military installations, among its important provisions.

The vote, which required a two-thirds majority, was 322 to 87.