LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS FOR THE SILVER STAR FAMILIES OF AMERICA

The Silver Star Families of America is a non profit/non political 501 c 3 organization. We do not endorse any political candidates and we spend no funds on political or lobbying activities. However we can and do involve ourselves in legislation in regard to the wounded, injured and ill of our armed forces. Also many states and cities have passed legislation in regard to the Silver Star Banner and/or Silver Star Banner Day. The Silver Star Families of America welcomes such legislation but will not engage in lobblying activity, and will strictly abide by the rules and regulations of the Internal Revenue Service. If you have any questions please contact our Legislative affairs officer Steve Newton.

The Silver Star Families of America is engaged in a wide array of veterans issues such as:

1. Veteran Courts
2. Veterans designated drivers License
3. Burn Pit investigations on veterans health
4. Post Tramatic Stress
5. Traumatic Brain Injuries
6. V.A. Hospice Care
7. Accumulation of radiation on veterans by repeated radiation producing health tests
8. The continued expenditures required to provide quality health care by the V.A,
9. Care and feeding of our homeless veterans
10. Care of our spinal cord injured veterans


State by State Veteran Drivers License
If you have further information please let us know.

State Military Status
Alabama No Legislation
Alaska Legislation Pending HB 180
Arizona None.
Arkansas Will start issuing them on 7/17. Passed
California No Legislation
Colorado The United Veterans Association in CO introduced legislation last year. It died. Contact state reps to get this revived.
Connecticut Passed and signed by governor
Delaware Passed
District of Columbia 5582   No Legislation
Florida Passed
Georgia Passed
Hawaii No Legislation
Idaho No Legislation
Illinois No Legislation
Indiana Passed in July 2011.
Iowa Iowa asks the question on drivers license applications.
Kansas No Legislation
Kentucky No Legislation
Louisiana No Legislation
Maine Maine will be issuing ID cards starting on July 18, 2011.
Maryland No Legislation
Massachusetts No Legislation
Michigan HB4127 Pending
Minnesota Passed in 2009
Mississippi No Legislation.
Missouri Pending
Montana No Legislation
Nebraska No Legislation
Nevada No designation on ID cards, but veterans are exempt from certain taxes and can receive customized plates.
New Hampshire No Legislation
New Jersey New Jersey's county departments of veterans affairs are issuing veteran ID cards. Passaic County .
New Mexico No Legislation
New York New York, through Senator Johnson, has introduced legislation to include designation on licenses in 2012. To fill the void, New York's county departments of veterans affairs are issuing veteran ID cards. Dutchess County, Suffolk County Saratoga County and Rome County.
North Carolina Passed
North Dakota Passed
Ohio Yes. Armed Forces designation passed in 2009
Oklahoma Pending SB 138
Oregon Passed
Pennsylvania Pending this year with SB-165
Rhode Island Yes
South Carolina Pending H3760
South Dakota No Legislation
Tennessee Passed This Year will go into effect when licenses are redesigned.
Texas Passed. HB 1514
Utah Passed
Vermont No Legislation
Virginia Legislation will be introduced in the 2012 session of the VA state legislature
Washington No Legislation
West Virginia Pending
Wisconsin Pending legislation
Wyoming No Legislation

SENT TO THE COMMITTEE
ON VETERANS AFFAIRS OF THE UNITED STATES
SENATE ON THE SILVER STAR FAMILIES OF
AMERICA AGENDA FOR 2010 and 2011

Chairman Akaka, members of the Senate Committee on Veterans affairs and staff: The Silver Star Families of America are proud to have been asked to submit written testimony to the Committee on Veterans Affairs and we look forward to working with the Committee in the future.

The SSFOA was founded in 2004 with one mission: To remember, honor and assist the wounded, ill, injured and dying troops and veterans from all wars. We have remained true to our mission even as we have expanded our membership and programs. The SSFOA Silver Star Service Banner has become the symbol of our wounded, ill and injured. And we are honored that the House and Senate both approved May 1st as Silver Star Service Banner Day; a day forever set aside to remember those who have sacrificed so much for us.

Mr. Chairman and members of the Committee: The SSFOA would like to express a few concerns which will set our legislative agenda.

  1. While we strongly supported legislation that provided training, insurance and a stipend for caregivers, we were dismayed that the bill provided these benefits only to those of the current conflict. As our veteran population ages it is imperative that this program be expanded to all veterans and their caregivers. It is our opinion that in the long haul, training caregivers will save the Veterans Administration time and money while making sure our veterans receive the care they deserve.
  2. We are very concerned about the number of suicides in the military and the quality of the programs designed to combat them. We have received information that the “anti-suicide” training programs are inadequate and provided unevenly.
  3. One of our top legislative priorities is to provide every new military recruit with an MRI scan. We strongly believe that having a base scan will provide information that can later be used to identify changes in the brain and will facilitate treatment and improve the claims procedure for those wounded by PTS or TBI.
  4. We are continuing to monitor the Veterans Administration's contracts with outside organizations using V.A. land. An example is the situation in Los Angeles where many acres of V.A. property have been contracted out. Our concern is that veterans that are patients have not always had access to the facilities that sit on V.A. land.
  5. We continue to receive requests for financial aid from veterans just separated who have not yet received their benefits (some have been waiting 1-2 years). It is our suggestion that all DoD claims and V.A. claims older than 6 months receive an automatic temporary approval.
  6. Smoking: While the SSFOA does not condone the practice we never again want to see an old veteran, who was probably encouraged by his government at the time of his service to smoke, hiding behind a pillar in a wheelchair in the freezing cold fearing he would get a ticket from the V.A. police. This is not acceptable and is not required for certification. Smoking areas should always be provided.
  7. Our Advisory Board has recommended that all returning veterans, and their families, be given information on what to look out for in regard to PTS, TBI and any other problems that they may encounter after a deployment.
  8. They are also concerned that the V.A. will not be able to provide the same standard of service they now provide, with the huge influx of new veterans and suggest the continued expansion of fiscal resources.
  9. After a survey we are recommending that the long standing practice of not issuing a Presidential letter of condolence to the families of suicide victims be revised. If the suicide was the result of being wounded by Post Traumatic Stress that occurred in a war zone we advise issuing a condolence letter. We are also asking that the Committee consider making such a suicide a “line of duty” death.
  10. We are concerned that all soldiers given medication in the field are monitored and the dispersal of the medication be recorded in their health records.
  11. While the SSFOA has not taken a position on homosexuals in the military, we strongly advocate that any one segment of the military population not be given any special treatment. Same rules and regulations of each branch of service for ALL in that branch must apply. The inclusion of any individual in the military must not be at the detriment of that force's effectiveness, cohesiveness and military readiness. We would also recommend that passage of any legislation be delayed until the completion of the DoD’s study.
  12. We recommend moving the official observance of Memorial Day back to its traditional May 30th date.


CONCLUSION

The SSFOA will continue to remember, honor and assist the wounded, ill, injured and dying of our armed forces and we will be pursuing these issues in our legislative agenda. We request that this testimony be read into the Congressional Record.

A special thank you to the members of the SSFOA and our friends at the FR for their input.

I thank the Chairman and the Committee for this opportunity and I ask that God bless you in all your endeavors and that He continue to bless the United States.

 

United States House of Representatives Recognize the Silver Star Service Banner and Declare May 1 Silver Star Service Banner Day.

HRES 855 IH
111th CONGRESS
1st Session
H. RES. 855
Expressing support for designation of May 1 as `Silver Star Service Banner Day'.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
October 22, 2009
Mr. BLUNT (for himself, Mr. SKELTON, Mr. CLAY, Mr. AKIN, Mrs. EMERSON, Mr. LUETKEMEYER, Mr. GRAVES, Mr. CARNAHAN, Mr. CLEAVER, and Mr. BARTLETT) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

RESOLUTION
Expressing support for designation of May 1 as `Silver Star Service Banner Day'.
Whereas the House of Representatives has always honored the sacrifices made by the wounded and ill members of the Armed Forces;
Whereas the Silver Star Service Banner has come to represent the members of the Armed Forces and veterans who were wounded or became ill in combat in the wars fought by the United States;
Whereas the Silver Star Families of America was formed to help the American people remember the sacrifices made by the wounded and ill members of the Armed Forces by designing and manufacturing Silver Star Service Banners and Flags for that purpose;
Whereas the sole mission of the Silver Star Families of America is to evoke memories of the sacrifices of members and veterans of the Armed Forces on behalf of the United States through the presence of a Silver Star Service Banner in a window or a Silver Star Flag flying;
Whereas the sacrifices of members and veterans of the Armed Forces on behalf of the United States should never be forgotten; and
Whereas May 1 would be an appropriate date to designate as `Silver Star Service Banner Day': Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the House of Representatives supports the designation of `Silver Star Service Banner Day' and calls upon the people of the United States to observe the day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

United States Senate Declares Silver Star Service Banner Day

111th CONGRESS
1st Session
S. RES. 320
Designating May 1 each year as `Silver Star Banner Day'.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
October 22, 2009
Mr. BOND (for himself and Mrs. MCCASKILL) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Armed Services

RESOLUTION
Designating May 1 each year as `Silver Star Banner Day'.
Whereas the Senate has always honored the sacrifices made by the wounded and ill members of the Armed Forces;
Whereas the Silver Star Service Banner has come to represent the members of the Armed Forces and veterans who were wounded or became ill in combat in the wars fought by the United States;
Whereas the Silver Star Families of America was formed to help the American people remember the sacrifices made by the wounded and ill members of the Armed Forces by designing and manufacturing Silver Star Service Banners and Flags for that purpose;
Whereas the sole mission of the Silver Star Families of America is to evoke memories of the sacrifices of members and veterans of the Armed Forces on behalf of the United States through the presence of a Silver Star Service Banner in a window or a Silver Star Flag flying; and
Whereas the sacrifices of members and veterans of the Armed Forces on behalf of the United States should never be forgotten: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation designating May 1 each year as `Silver Star Service Banner Day' and to call upon the people of the United States to observe the day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA

TEXAS SECRETARY OF STATE
House Concurrent Resolutions 80th Regular SessioN

ALABAMA

The group, founded in 2005, has presented hundreds of Silver Star banners to wounded servicemembers and their families. The banners, which the group is working to make a government-recognized service banner, like those of the Gold Star Mothers, serve as a reminder to everyone who sees them of individuals’ sacrifices.

Alabama State Rep. Greg Wren said he introduced the legislation to ensure that the “blood sacrifice of those who were wounded while wearing the uniform of the United States” is recognized. His efforts paid off with unanimous approval in both the state’s house and senate. Wren also had a personal reason for working to have May 1 declared as Silver Star Day in Alabama. His family has a long history of military service, including his father, retired Air Force Chief Master Sgt. James Wren, he said.

HR24
By Representative Wren
RFD Rules
Rd 1 28-FEB-07

DESIGNATING SILVER STAR DAY IN THE STATE OF ALABAMA ON MAY 1, 2007.

WHEREAS, it is with great pride and admiration that we designate Silver Star Day in the State of Alabama on May 1, 2007, to honor the men and women who served, and continue to serve, with honor and distinction as members of the United States Armed Forces; and

WHEREAS, the Silver Star Families of America, through their dedication, hard work, and willingness to take on new challenges, have provided wounded veterans with Silver Star Banners, flags, and care packages to honor their incalculable sacrifices and sense of duty and dedication in defense of others; and

WHEREAS, to further honor these brave men and women, we ask all Alabamians to pause for a moment to say a prayer of thanks, or word of appreciation, for the countless veterans who have suffered both physical and mental pain, that we might enjoy the freedom we share today; now therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF ALABAMA, That special commendation and tribute are herein extended to wounded veterans of the United States Armed Forces and, by copy of this resolution for appropriate display, we recognize this momentous Silver Star Day in the State of Alabama on May 1, 2007.

Resolutions, Congratulatory
Silver Star Day

MINNESOTA
S.F. No. 1359, as introduced - 85th Legislative Session (2007-2008)


OKLAHOMA SENATE

On Tuesday, the Senate praised the Silver Star Families of America with the passage of Senate Resolution 29, for their efforts in honoring those who have been injured or wounded in the defense of their country. Silver Star Families is a not-for-profit, all volunteer organization founded for the purpose of establishing a Service Flag to honor wounded military men and women. The organization also provides assistance and support to these soldiers and their families. The resolution also designates May 1, 2007, as “Silver Star Day” in Oklahoma in recognition of the wounded military personnel of this state.

RHODE ISLAND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

CONGRESSIONAL RECORD

HB 2479 Designates May 1 of each year as "Silver Star Families of America Day" to honor our wounded soldiers
Sponsor: Wasson, Jay (141) Proposed Effective Date: 08/28/2008
CoSponsor: Day, David (148) ..........etal. LR Number: 5575L.01I
Last Action: 04/03/2008 - Referred: Special Committee on Veterans (H)
HB2479
Next Hearing: Hearing not scheduled
Calendar: Bill currently not on a calendar

ACTIONS HEARINGS CALENDAR FISCAL NOTES

Bill Summaries for HB2479
* Introduced *

---------------------------------------------------------------
Bill Text for HB2479
Introduced

07-R085

2007 -- H 6087

Enacted 03/01/07

H O U S E R E S O L U T I O N

PROCLAIMING MAY 1, 2007 TO BE "SILVER STAR DAY" IN THE STATE OF RHODE ISLAND
Introduced By: Representative Kenneth Carter

Date Introduced: March 01, 2007

WHEREAS, Rhode Islanders have always honored and valued the myriad of sacrifices men and women in the Armed Forces have and continue to make protecting our country, our liberties and cherished freedoms, and the American way of life; and WHEREAS, For years there has been a Blue Star Banner honoring all members of our military, and a Gold Star Banner that honors members of the military who lost their lives; and WHEREAS, The Silver Star Families of America (SSFOA) is an all volunteer organization established to provide a flag service to honor all members of the military who have been wounded; and WHEREAS, The SSFOA designed and manufactures a Silver Star Banner and Flag in remembrance of these blood sacrifices. Volunteers from the organization work tirelessly to freely provide hundreds of Silver Star Banners, Flags and care packages to members of the military who have been wounded, and their families; and WHEREAS, The Silver Star Families of America's goal is to assure that all people across the nation, remember the blood sacrificed by these brave men and women every time they see a Silver Star Banner in a window or a Silver Star Flag proudly flying; and WHEREAS, It is vital that the blood sacrifices made by so many members of our Armed Forces, from Rhode Island and across the Nation, never be forgotten; now, therefore be it RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations hereby proclaims May 1, 2007 to be "Silver Star Day" in the State of Rhode Island in honor of all our service men and women who sacrificed their blood for our country; and be it further RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives hereby thanks the Silver Star Families of America for their commitment and all their efforts on behalf of our wounded Armed Forces members; and be it further RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and he hereby is authorized and directed to transmit a duly certified copy of this resolution to the Silver Star Families of America Organization.

=======

LC02447

ARIZONA

HCR 2012- veterans’ honors (black star banners)
That the Members of the Legislature recognize a Black Star Service Banner to ho nor all veterans
of the United States armed forces and the Silver Star Service Banner to honor those veterans
who have been wounded or disabled.

Original Sponsor:
Rep. Jerry Weiers (R-Dist. 12)
Latest Major Action: 2/21/2008- First read, assigned to House Committee on Cou
on Counties,
Municipalities and Military Affairs and Rules Committees. 2/25/2008-Second read. 3/4/2008-
Approved 8-0 in House Committee on Counties, Municipalities and Military Affairs.



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The Silver Star Families of America is a non-partisan, not-for-profit charitable organization committed to supporting the United States combat wounded, ill, injured and dying military members and Veterans from all wars, past and present, and honoring their sacrifice with Silver Star Banners.Content within this web site is the sole property of The Silver Star Families of America"All photos and letters sent to the SSFOA become the property of the organization to be used in any way we deem appropriate."

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