March 05, 2019

Crapo, Bennet Reintroduce "Network Hubs" Bill to Enhance Access to Resources for Veterans

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) today reintroduced the Helping Unleash Benefits and Services (HUBS) for Veterans Act of 2019, bipartisan legislation to enhance access to essential resources for veterans, servicemembers, and their families by supporting local “network hubs.” 

“The transition out of military service into the civilian world can prove a particularly daunting and challenging period for veterans and their families,” Crapo said. “Many community-based and nonprofit organizations across the nation, including in Idaho, have stepped up to provide crucial long-term, holistic support and assistance to servicemembers.  This bill makes ensuring their ongoing success a top priority.” 

“Colorado has some of the best resources for servicemembers, veterans, and their families, but navigating organizations to find support can be frustrating and time-consuming,” Bennet said. “Communities in Colorado have already taken the lead in establishing network hubs that offer a trusted, single point of entry to a variety of resources. Our bill recognizes that supportive services are most effective when used in conjunction with one another, giving network hubs further support to help veterans cut through bureaucracy.”

Currently, veterans must navigate a number of organizations and agencies to find the resources they need—a process that is often confusing and time-consuming. The HUBS for Veterans Act would authorize a five-year pilot program to provide matching grant funds to “network hubs,” non-profit organizations that offer access to multiple, wraparound services from one source. The bill directs the Department of Labor, in consultation with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), to prioritize network hubs that provide job recruitment training, educational support services, financial services, entrepreneurship training, behavioral health services, and assistance in accessing benefits administered by the VA. 

The bill also would ensure that servicemembers receive information through the Transition Assistance Program (TAP) program about network hubs located in the community in which they will reside once they become a civilian. TAP is an interagency collaboration between the Departments of Defense, Labor, and Veterans Affairs that provides information to servicemembers and spouses to help them transition from military service to civilian life. 

The bill text is available HERE

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