Baker refiles bill honoring veterans who die to service-related illnesses

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – For Memorial Day this year, Governor Baker has refiled a bill to honor the families of veterans in the Commonwealth.

The bill would create the Massachusetts Medal of Fidelity which would be given to the families of veterans who died from service-related illnesses.

According to Governor Baker the medal would be given to the next-of-kin of any service member who died from diseases or conditions linked to their time in the military. That would include veterans who struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder or service members that were exposed to harmful toxins like Agent Orange, which was use during the Vietnam War.

“Massachusetts is constantly, and I give the legislature huge credit on this as well, is constantly looking for ways to enhance the benefits that we make available to veterans and their families here in the Commonwealth,” said Baker.

The Governor first filed the bill last September and it was given a favorable recommendation by the Joint Committee on Veterans and Federal Affairs. It was then referred to the Senate Ways and Means committee but no further action was taken. The Governor said he’s optimistic that the bill will pass this session because he believes it should be a top priority to get proper benefits to the families of veterans who died from service related illnesses.

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