WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) introduced The Boosting Rates of American Veterans Employment Act (BRAVE Act), bipartisan legislation to support job creation for America’s veterans.
“I’m proud to join Senator Baldwin to introduce bipartisan legislation to support the businesses that support our veterans,” said Senator Tillis. “Veterans bring tremendous leadership capabilities and work ethic to the private sector, and the BRAVE Act is a major win for both veterans and employers who hire them.”
“America’s veterans have bravely served our nation and we have a shared responsibility to make sure their service and sacrifice is honored,” said Senator Baldwin. “The BRAVE Act is a bipartisan reform that can help reduce the unemployment rate for veterans and create jobs for them. I am proud to work across party lines and reward businesses that are putting our veterans to work.”
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) establishes long-term contracts with private businesses for medical equipment, supplies, services and more. Currently, the VA gives preference for these contracts to veteran-owned small businesses, however it does not give preference to businesses that actively employ veterans.
The BRAVE Act would change that by allowing the VA to consider the proportion of veterans employed by a prospective contractor when awarding federal contracts. The VA Secretary would have the authority to give preference to businesses that employ veterans on a full-time basis, and the VA would determine the preference for a business based on their percentage of full-time veteran employees.
The bipartisan legislation would also encourage and incentivize VA contractors to employ veterans, and would provide oversight of VA contractors and would require 5-year debarment from contracting for those who knowingly misrepresent their proportion of veteran employees.
The BRAVE Act is supported by The American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America.