Fighting for our Servicemembers and Veterans
Protecting our national security is imperative to the American way of life. Continuous wars have taken a toll on our military. I am dedicated to honoring our commitments and restoring the health of our military. We need smart acquisitions to restore our military strength; we need to care for our servicemembers and the families who are bearing the burden of war; we need to honor our obligations to our Veterans. Providing for our armed forces, service members and Veterans is essential to continue our American freedoms.
Increasing Military Readiness
Being from the Mahoning Valley, I often think of the servicemembers at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station and Camp Ravenna who work tirelessly each day to keep our nation safe and the duty I have to ensure they have what they need to do their jobs. As a member of the House Defense Approprations Subcommittee and the House Military Construction and Veterans Appropriations Subcommittee, I am proud to play an integral part in the formation of funding legislation that help improve the equipment and services that are critical to our national security. Each and every day, the men and women of our military sacrifice for our safety; it is our job to give them the resources they need to succeed.
Steady investments in our military is essential, especially prioritizing the recapitalization of the Air Force’s C130 Fleet. This modernization plan will provide hardworking airmen, including the 910th Airlift Wing at Youngstown Air Reserve Station, with overdue essential upgrades. Furthermore, I am pleased that we were able to reinvest $12M in the 13th District, providing essential upgrades to the Youngstown Air Reserve Station and Camp Ravenna. This funding will give our Airmen and Soldiers the training facilities necessary to remain combat ready and complete their missions. I am proud to have supported our men and women in uniform and will continue ensure the vital upkeep of YARS and Camp Ravenna.
Fighting for Our Veterans Healthcare
The health and well-being of our nation’s active servicemen, servicewomen, and veterans is extremely important to me. Unfortunately, military mental health patients around the country are still having trouble accessing quality treatment. This is inexcusable. As Co-Chair of the Military Mental Health Caucus, I have worked closely with my Congressional colleagues to demand that military members and veterans suffering from mental illnesses receive the same standard of treatment. The price of not doing so is simply too high—as we are painfully finding out.
I have cosponsored multiple pieces of legislation designed to assist our service members and their families, including the Military and Veteran Caregiver Services Improvement Act, Post 9/11 GI Bill Reserve Component Eligibility Act, Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act, a bill to prohibit any hiring freeze from affecting the VA, the Expedited Hiring for VA Trained Physicians Act, Women Veterans Access to Quality Care Act, and the Sgt Brandon Ketchum Never Again Act. Additionally, I have supported the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act, which was signed into law by President Obama on February 12, 2015. This legislation increases access to mental health care by creating a peer support and community outreach pilot program to assist transitioning service members, and mandating an annual evaluation of VA mental health and suicide-prevention programs. While this is an important step in the right direction, we must do more.
We need to change the VA system in a way that is going to fix this problem and heal our veterans, and we must work to rebuild the trust with veterans and their families. That is why I have introduced legislation that would help modernize and improve military health treatment both at the VA and at Veteran Services Organizations by incorporating integrative health techniques into their treatment for veterans. I believe these integrative approaches can help preemptively address these needs and ultimately create less expensive treatments for long-term veteran healthcare.
Honor Our Commitment to Veterans
Through my position on the Appropriations Committee I intend to make sure our Veterans get the care they fought for and deserve. I have co-sponsored multiple pieces of legislation designed to guarantee we do not turn our back on the promises we made our Veterans. This legislation includes the Servicemember Retirement Improvement Act, Fair Treatment for Families of Veterans Act, Reducing Barriers for Veterans Education Act, Support the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act, Victims of Agent Orange Relief Act, Honor America's Guard-Reserve Retirees Act, Retired Pay Restoration Act, and Military Surviving Spouses Equity Act. If we are going to continue to rely upon our military to act when we require their assistance, we must act now to hold up our end of the bargain. The United States made promises to our Veterans and now owes faithfulness to our commitments.
More on Fighting for our Servicemembers and Veterans
Washington, DC – The House of Representatives passed the bipartisan Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act this evening. The bill contains the provisions of over a dozen pieces of legislation authored or supported by Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13), Co-Chair of the National Guard and Reserve Caucus, several of which are highlighted below.
Ryan is quarantining at home and cast his vote remotely.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The House Armed Services Committee advanced its version of the Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act this morning containing the provisions of several pieces of bipartisan legislation authored or supported by Representative Tim Ryan (OH-13), Co-Chair of the National Guard and Reserve Caucus.
Youngstown, Ohio – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13), Vice-Chair of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, made the following statement in response to today’s attack outside the gates of Hamid Karzai International Airport in Afghanistan that has left 12 U.S. servicemembers killed and 15 wounded:
Washington, DC – Representatives Tim Ryan (D-OH), Jenniffer González-Colón (R-PR), Stephanie Bice (R-OK), and Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) introduced bipartisan legislation today to eliminate the stigma of mental health in the Armed Forces by identifying ways to encourage servicemembers to seek help when they need it.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Congressman Chris Jacobs (R-NY) introduce the bipartisan Reservists Opportunity Act to give more flexibility to members of the National Guard and Reserves.
Niles, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) issued the following statement on the situation in Afghanistan:
“As my team and I keep a close eye on the situation in Afghanistan, my heart and gratitude are with the men and women of the U.S. military who have served and sacrificed so much, the American civilians fleeing the country, and the Afghan nationals who served as crucial allies in our mission there.
Lima, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13), Vice Chairman of the U.S. House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today toured the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio and spoke with the hardworking men and women who manufacture the Abrams tank at the plant. Ryan has been a longtime defender of the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, most recently using his position on the powerful House Appropriations Committee to help secure $65 million to upgrade the M1 Abrams main battle tank.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13), Chairman of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee, released the following statement after voting in favor of the bipartisan $2.1 billion supplemental spending bill to increase security at the United States Capitol in response to the January 6th insurrection, reimburse the National Guard for their activation to secure the Capitol, shore up U.S. Capitol Police Pay, and to relocate Afghans who assisted the U.S troops during the war.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13), member of the House Appropriations Committee and Chairman of the Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee and Vice-Chair of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, released the following statement after securing nearly $18 million for all ten local Community Funding Projects that he submitted in the government funding package that passed the House of Representatives today.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan voted this week to authorize the construction of a National Medal of Honor Memorial in Washington, DC.
Representative Tim Ryan (OH-13) was one of ten original cosponsors of the bill, which passed the House of Representatives unanimously. The legislation authorizes the National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation to place a commemorative memorial in the nation’s Capital to honor the extraordinary acts of valor, selfless service, and sacrifice displayed by Medal of Honor recipients.