March 12, 2021

ICYMI: Vice Chair Levin Introduced Bipartisan Guard & Reserve GI Bill Parity Act

Bill comes after years long Committee effort to equalize benefits for members of the Guard and Reserve

Press Contact

Jenni Geurink (Takano), 202-819-4684

Eric Mee (Levin), 202-407-0805

WASHINGTON, D.C — Yesterday, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Vice Chair and Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity Chair Mike Levin (D-Calif.) introduced his bipartisan Guard and Reserve GI Bill Parity Act of 2021. This legislation would expand eligibility for the Post-9/11 GI Bill to count every day that a servicemember is paid and in uniform toward benefit eligibility in order to achieve GI Bill parity for National Guard and Reserve members. 

 

In January 2021, Chairman Takano and Rep. Levin sent a letter to National Guard Chief General Hokanson to better understand how the National Guard members protecting our Capitol following the June 6th insurrection are earning eligibility for the GI Bill. Following their effort, the National Guard Bureau indicated that these members would indeed qualify due to the emergency declared on 9/11 but made it clear that legislation is still needed to finally achieve GI Bill Parity once and for all. Last Congress, Rep. Mike Levin introduced H.R. 5870, the Guard and Reserve GI Bill Parity Actand led the Committee’s efforts to address the discrepancies that lead to GI bill disparities

 

As an original cosponsor of this critical fix, Chairman Mark Takano (D-Calif.) released the following statement along with Rep. Mike Levin. 

 

“Time and time again, through natural disasters, global pandemics, and threats to our democracy, our National Guard and Reserve members have answered the call to serve. But despite taking on the same risks and doing the same jobs as their Active Duty counterparts, these servicemembers don’t have access to the same benefits,” said Chairman Takano. “That’s not right. Our Guard and Reserve members leave their families, jobs, and responsibilities behind to serve our country on increasingly complex missions. This is especially important due to the recent announcement by the Pentagon approving an additional two month deployment of our National Guard to the Capitol -- it is past time that these servicemembers have access to the GI Bill benefits they deserve. Rep. Mike Levin has been leading the Committee’s years long effort to finally get GI Bill parity for our servicemembers, and I’m proud to support his bipartisan legislation.” 

 

“The men and women who serve in the Guard and Reserve make incredible sacrifices for our country just like other servicemembers, and they deserve equal benefits for doing similar jobs and facing similar risks,” said Rep. Levin. “This bill will bring some basic fairness to the way GI Bill benefits are earned and provide Guard and Reserve members with the benefits they deserve. I look forward to advancing this bill on behalf of the thousands of Guard members who defended our Capitol and many others who have sacrificed for our country.”

 

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