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Illinois Democrats Seek Benefits for Filipino Vets
Illinois Democrats Seek Benefits for Filipino Vets

Democratic members of Illinois’ congressional delegation have introduced a bill to restore full veterans’ benefits to all Filipino-Americans who fought in World War II.

Currently those Filipino-American veterans who spend more than 60 days at a time or more than 183 days a year outside the U.S. only get half their benefits.

The Benefits Fairness for Filipino Veterans Act would do away with those residency restrictions. Affected benefits include service-related disability care, survivor benefits and education for the children of veterans.

The bill was introduced Friday by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and U.S. House members Luis Gutierrez, Tammy Duckworth, William Enyart and Cheri Bustos.

Durbin said whether or not they spend part of the year visiting family in the Philippines is irrelevant to their service to the United States.