11 Sep '18, 8pm

Wilkie opposes bill that would extend Agent Orange benefits to 'Blue Water' veterans

Wilkie opposes bill that would extend Agent Orange benefits to 'Blue Water' veterans

WASHINGTON – New Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie has come out against extending benefits to veterans who served off the coast during the Vietnam War, citing high costs and insufficient evidence that they were exposed to Agent Orange. Wilkie urged senators in a letter Friday to reject legislation that would make health care and disability compensation available to approximately 90,000 “Blue Water” Navy veterans – those sailors aboard aircraft carriers, destroyers and other ships who contend they were exposed to Agent Orange through the ships’ water systems. The dioxin-laden herbicide has been found to cause respiratory cancers, Parkinson’s disease and heart disease, as well as other conditions. The bill passed the House unanimously in June and was sent to the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee. “We know it is incredibly difficult to hear from Blue Wat...

Full article: https://www.stripes.com/news/wilkie-opposes-bill-that-wou...

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