By The Leader Staff
Rep. David Valadao
Rep. David Valadao

Congressman David G. Valadao this week applauded the president’s signing of the bipartisan Honoring Our PACT Act into law this week. The local congressman voted in support of the legislation both times it passed the House of Representatives.

“I’m glad to see this significant expansion of veterans’ healthcare benefits become law,” said Valadao. “Our veterans have made unimaginable sacrifices in defense of our freedom, and it is our duty to provide the highest level of care for these brave men and women.”

The military has used burn pits to dispose of waste during operations in areas outside of the United States. Currently, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides compensation and healthcare to veterans exposed to burn pits; however, veterans must prove their condition is related to exposure, and research is still ongoing for many associated medical conditions.

This comprehensive legislation addresses healthcare, disability compensation, research, and additional resources related to veterans suffering from multiple forms of toxic exposure, including burn pits and herbicides. It also establishes presumptions of service connection to toxic exposure for multiple veteran groups.