With all the political stalemates and roadblocks choking the American government, it’s great to hear about some common-sense programs that might have a shot at passing both houses. Recently, Senator Ben Cardin and Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger (both MD Democrats) announced legislation that would allow us to donate our hotel reward points to members of the American Armed Forces. “Hotels for Heroes” would provide free roundtrip airfare to wounded warriors recovering at military or VA medical centers, as well as to friends and family visiting them. The Hotels for Heroes program is an extension of the already existing “Hero Miles” program which allows us to donate frequent-flier miles for a similar purpose. Congressman Roscoe Bartlett (MD Republican) is a supporter and co-sponsor of this bipartisan legislation; and Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi will be the Republican co-sponsor in the Senate.
From Senator Ben Cardin:
November 11 is Veterans Day — a time in which we as a nation pause to give thanks to the brave men and women of our military, and their families, for all they have sacrificed for our nation. Our military families face enormous challenges, not just emotionally, but financially, and I want to lessen that burden.
To accomplish that goal, I recently teamed up with Maryland Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger to make it easier for military families to be with their loved ones as they recover from injuries or illnesses sustained defending our nation.
The creation of the “Hotels for Heroes” program is the next step in providing military families with the support they need when their loved ones are wounded or injured. Americans are known for their generosity of spirit and love of country and this new program will allow them to show how much they appreciate the sacrifices made by our military by providing their families with additional support during a very difficult time.
It’s really about Americans helping other Americans who have given so much to our nation. On this Veterans Day, I can think of no greater present for the members of our military.
You can learn more about the existing “Hero Miles” program here.
Also, see the video where Senator Cardin joins Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger announcing the legislation that would help wounded military men & women and their families.
(cover image: Homeless U.S. military veterans salute the flag during the Pledge of Allegiance at a “Stand Down” event hosted by the Department of Veterans Affairs on November 3, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. A week ahead of Veterans Day, more than 500 homeless veterans were expected to attend the event, where they received free clothing, medical care, employment assistance and were able to see a judge to resolve legal issues. Organizers say the homeless veterans population has surged in recent years with the high national unemployment rate. Stand Down is a military term that means a temporary stop of offensive military action.)
- Major events honoring Harford Co. Veterans, Nov. 10 – 12
- Ruppersberger brings economic aid caseworkers into Baltimore neighborhoods
- Mayors unveil ‘Common-Sense Jobs Plan’ before Labor Day
- Ruppersberger laments end of space shuttle program, calls for new initiatives
(sources: bartlett.house.gov, cardin.senate.gov, fisherhouse.org)