Congresswoman Claudia Tenney Introduces Chuck Osier Burial Benefits Act of 2017
Legislation will expand benefit options for veterans by requiring the VA to offer a commemorative urn or a plaque
New Hartford, N.Y.—Today, Congresswoman Claudia Tenney (NY-22) introduced the Chuck Osier Burial Benefits Act of 2017, H.R. 4338. Named in honor of a veteran from the 22nd District, this bill would expand the benefit options for veterans who are cremated and laid to rest in a non-traditional resting place by requiring the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to offer either a commemorative urn or a plaque.
“As non-traditional burial practices increase in the United States, the benefits provided to our veterans by the VA should keep pace. The Chuck Osier Burial Benefits Act would signify an individual’s status as a veteran to ensure that the remains of all veterans are appropriately honored, regardless of the end-of-life decisions they make,” said Congresswoman Claudia Tenney. “I am grateful to the Osier family, especially Donna Osier, for their inspiration and dedication in working to make this bill a reality. I look forward to continuing to work alongside the Osiers to ensure all of our veterans receive the recognition they deserve.”
According to the National Funeral Directors Association, since 2005, the number of cremations nationwide has risen by nearly 50 percent. According to the group, in 2016, more Americans chose cremation over traditional burials for the first time ever.
Despite these clear trends, there are currently no burial benefits through the VA which are equivalent to a headstone, marker or medallion to distinguish the cremated remains of a veteran who is not laid to rest in a traditional cemetery.
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