A bipartisan bill that will allow disabled war veterans to avoid intrusive airport security screening procedures unanimously passed the House of Representatives last week and is being sent to President Barack Obama for his signature.
Rep. Dave Joyce of Russell Township was the first Republican to cosponsor the measure authored by Hawaii Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a captain in Hawaii’s National Guard. He worked with Gabbard to line up support for the bill from Republicans and Democrats.
Gabbard introduced the bill after veterans gave her troubling accounts of having to remove clothing and prosthetics in view of other passengers or having to awkwardly go through screening machines without the benefit of a prosthetic leg or limb.
It directs the Transportation Security Administration to provide expedited passenger screening services for severely injured or disabled Armed Forces members and veterans, as well as their accompanying family members or nonmedical attendants.
“While we’ll never be able to repay our heroic servicemen and women for the sacrifices they’ve made in the line of duty, it should be our top priority to make their lives back home as easy and comfortable as possible,” said a statement from Joyce. “Now we’ll be able to ensure that our wounded warriors are able to get through airport security quickly and comfortably, and avoid any disruptive or difficult screening practices.”
The bill was was endorsed by the American Legion, Disabled Veterans of American, Paralyzed Veterans of America, the Wounded Warrior Project, and the American Federation of Government Employees