Kelly, Hassan, Cassidy Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Increase Access to Job Counseling Services for Surviving Spouses of Service Members

Senators Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and Eric Schmitt (R-MO) introduced a bipartisan bill to increase access to job counseling services for surviving spouses of members of the Armed Forces who died while on active duty. The Disabled Veterans Outreach Program, housed within the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service at the Department of Labor, provides every state with funding to hire specialists who provide individualized career counseling services to eligible veterans. The Gold Star and Surviving Spouse Career Services Act would expand the program so that surviving spouses can also use these services.  

“We have an obligation to stand behind the families of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service of our country,” said Kelly. “Making sure surviving spouses have the services they need to get a good-paying job to support their families after their loss is the least our government can do.”  

“After the terrible loss of a service member, we must do everything that we can to support their families,” said Hassan. “This bipartisan bill is a commonsense way to help address the challenges that surviving spouses can face in their careers, and we must continue working to support our service members and their families.”  

“We often thank the wife or husband of those serving overseas for their sacrifice,” said Cassidy. “If we really mean this, then a Gold Star spouse should be able to continue to access the services that they accessed when their husband or wife was alive.”