FAIR LAWN, NJ (Bergen County)— U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) Thursday honored Veterans Day and all those who have served and sacrificed for our nation, delivered remarks at the Fair Lawn Veterans Day Ceremony, and advocated for better care for North Jersey’s veterans.
Gottheimer spoke alongside VFW Post 281 Commander David Boone and Fair Lawn Mayor Kurt Peluso.
“There is nothing more important in this job than my responsibility to always have the backs of those who have stepped forward to protect us. To all veterans and active-duty service members, know this, after sacrificing and struggling for so much, you should never struggle to get the care or recognition you so rightfully deserve.” Gottheimer said. “These are not Democrat or Republican issues – they are principles of the nation we live in, the one you protect. I’ve been proud to work across the aisle in Congress on ways to improve veterans’ benefits and care. Of course, our fight for our democracy and our veterans is far from over, there is much more to be done, and I will never stop fighting for our veterans.”
Gottheimer has helped lead several initiatives to fight for North Jersey’s veterans:
- Gottheimer is working with New Jersey’s VA Director to lower wait times and drive times for veterans; boost access to closer doctors, hospitals, and other facilities; create a female veteran-focused clinic in New Jersey; and increase mental health care access in Newton and Bergen.
- The House passed Gottheimer’s bipartisan legislation to invest in filling the more than 49,000 vacant positions at the VA.
- The House passed Gottheimer’s bipartisan legislation to increase investment for the Veterans Health Administration to specifically hire more mental health professionals.
- Gottheimer cosponsored and helped pass H.R.1448 – the Puppies Assisting Wounded Servicemembers (PAWS) for Veterans Therapy Act, to create a new program at the VA to train and match service dogs with veterans suffering from PTSD.
- Gottheimer cosponored and helped pass H.R. 299 – the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act, on a 410 to zero vote, to extend disability benefits covering medical conditions associated with Agent Orange exposure to those who served on ships off the coast of Vietnam, known as “Blue Water” Navy veterans. This bill was signed into law.
- Gottheimer cosponsored the Congressional Gold Medal for Service Members killed in the Abbey Gate Bombing in at the Kabul Airport in Afghanistan on August 26,2021 Act (H.R.5142)
- Gottheimer cosponsored the Veteran Suicide Prevention Act (H.R.1123) to require the VA to review the deaths of veterans who died by suicide while under VA care in order to improve mental health care for our most vulnerable veterans. Congressman Gottheimer cosponsored the United States-Israel PTSD Collaborative Research Act (H.R.852) to establish a grant program to form a US-Israel joint collaboration in efforts to better study and understand PTSD.