Today, Rep. Ralph Hall (TX-04) voted with a House majority to pass H.J.Res. 91, Honoring the Families of Fallen Soldiers Act, 425-0. The bill provides funding for military death benefits, despite the suspension of this benefit during the government shutdown. In the event of a servicemember's death, eligible family survivors receive customary death benefits including a $100,000 non-taxable gratuity to help with immediate financial hardships (i.e. funeral and burial expenses, authorized funeral travel, dignified transfer of remains, temporary continuation of military housing, etc.). During the shutdown, the Administration halted these payments.
"Our troops put their lives on the line daily to keep America safe and secure," said Hall. "In return for their sacrifice, we should provide our servicemen and women the peace of mind that, in the event they are killed in action, their families would have some security in return."
Hall continued, "We often talk of our troops' bravery and sacrifice -- rightly so -- but we should never forget their families share in that sacrifice. The spouses, children, parents, and siblings of our servicemembers are equally deserving of our respect, and they should not be left to fend for themselves.
"I hope the Senate joins the House in passing this important legislation on behalf of our troops and families as we continue to work towards a responsible budget solution."