From: The Honorable Juan Vargas
Sent By:
eddie.meyer@mail.house.gov

Date: 9/15/2016

Dear Colleague:

Please join me by cosponsoring legislation to allow deported veterans the opportunity to temporarily parole back into the United States to seek care from a VA facility. There has been a long tradition of foreign-born soldiers who have served in the U.S.
military since the founding of the republic. Many of these individuals enlist in the military under the false belief that military service will automatically make them U.S. citizens. For these individuals, low-level offenses they commit often result in removal.
This effectively denies these veterans the medical care they require.

Regardless of immigration status, all U.S. military veterans are entitled to treatment from VA medical facilities for service related injuries. Veterans who separated under conditions other than dishonorable are eligible for VA healthcare benefits. Due to
inaction and lack of cooperation between the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the State Department, veterans have been unable to receive their VA disability compensation and pensions (if they weren’t already receiving them) after being deported. The
VA’s Foreign Medical Assistance Program is supposed to guarantee veterans abroad access to healthcare services. There has been no evidence of any deported veteran receiving treatment under this program.

The federal government needs to provide veterans removed from the country with the opportunity to access healthcare services. My legislation sponsoring would:

  • allow deported veterans the opportunity to temporarily parole back into the United States to seek care from a VA facility.  The bill amends section 212 (d)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act accordingly to give the Secretary of Homeland Security
    the discretion to temporarily parole deported veterans into the U.S. on a case by case basis to seek healthcare services then return home.

For more information about the bill or to become a cosponsor of the legislation, please contact Eddie Meyer at
eddie.meyer@mail.house.gov (202-225-8045).

Sincerely,

 

JUAN VARGAS

Member of Congress