Young, Duckworth Bill to Provide TSA PreCheck to Disabled Veterans Passes Senate
WASHINGTON — Today, bipartisan legislation authored by U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) to provide disabled veterans Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Pre√® passed the Senate by unanimous consent.
TSA Pre√® is already offered to active duty, reserves, and National Guard service members at no cost. The Veterans Expedited TSA Screening (VETS) Safe Travel Act will expand this program to include veterans who are amputees, paralyzed, or blind. Currently, there are approximately 70,000 amputee veterans, 100,000 paralyzed, and 130,000 blind veterans in the United States. Passing through airport security with prosthetics, wheelchairs, or other mobility aids presents a challenge to these individuals when traveling.
“The VETS Safe Travel Act was written for veterans with disabilities who dread the airport because of the indignities they will endure at security checkpoints. This bill will help veterans travel easier by providing them with Pre√® benefits. I’m glad our bill finally passed the Senate, and I urge the House to pass it quickly,” said Senator Young.
“Millions of Veterans have sacrificed a great deal in service to our nation and returned home with service-connected disabilities. For those of us who rely on prosthetics and wheelchairs for mobility, air travel and passing through airport security can be a challenge,” said Senator Duckworth. “I’m proud the Senate passed this bipartisan legislation to make TSA PreCheck available at no cost to these Veterans and make flying and passing through airports a little easier and less intrusive, and I hope we can get it to President Biden’s desk soon.”
Under the VETS Safe Travel Act, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and TSA would be directed to work together to provide these benefits at no cost to eligible veterans upon request. The VA would be required to conduct outreach to ensure that eligible veterans are aware of this potential benefit before they travel. Additionally, TSA advises that these veterans use TSA Pre√® in conjunction with calling the TSA Cares hotline 72-hours prior to departure to ensure expedited screening.
Senators Young and Duckworth were joined by Senators Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) in reintroducing the bill last year.
The legislation is supported by the Wounded Warrior Project, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Honor Flight Network, Disabled American Veterans, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of American, VetsFirst, and the American Legion.
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