Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) introduced the Guarantee Housing for Terminally Ill Veterans Act, legislation intended to improve the Specially Adapted Housing Grants program.
“When a veteran is tragically diagnosed with a service-connected terminal illness, they should have the comfort of living the remainder of their lives with the independence and dignity they deserve,” said Congresswoman Brownley. “They shouldn’t have to wait for the VA to approve their housing claim to make that happen.”
Under current law, VA provides grants to servicemembers and veterans with certain permanent and total service-connected disabilities to help purchase or construct an adapted home, or modify an existing home to accommodate a disability, such as installing wheelchair ramps or other necessary accommodations to enable the veterans to live independently.
Unfortunately, there is delay from the time that a veteran applies to the time the award is made, and some veterans have passed away while waiting for grant approval. Congresswoman Brownley’s bill would authorize the VA to reimburse veterans retroactively for housing adaptations made independently from the VA once a grant application is approved.