TUCSON— Today, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva reintroduced the Veterans Visa and Protection Act of 2021. The bill will allow for eligible deported veterans to return back to the United States.
“Any person brave enough to put their lives on the line for our country should not face deportation upon returning home from war,” said Rep. Grijalva. “This legislation will allow us to honor our commitments to immigrant veterans and bring them home to live freely in the country they enlisted to serve and receive access to the VA benefits they earned through their sacrifice.”
In 2019, the GAO found that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has failed to track how many veterans have been deported. Under current law, deported veterans can only return to the United States in death for a burial in a veteran’s cemetery. With this legislation, eligible veterans will be able to return to the United States, reunite with their families and get access to VA benefits and care.
Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) reintroduced companion legislation in the U.S. Senate.
“Far too many men and women willing to wear our uniform have been deported by the same nation they risked their lives to defend due to the unnecessary and complex barriers they faced during the naturalization process,” Duckworth said. “I’m proud to introduce this important bill with Representative Grijalva that would make it easier for Veterans to become citizens, enabling them to live here with their families and access the Veteran and military benefits they earned through their service.”