This bill HR 1288 passed the 114th session of the House but did not pass the Senate because of rules in the Senate – other Congressional Gold medal bills were being legislated – one of those bills was given preference, therefore this bill failed in the 114th Congress. As we understand the rules, another Congressional Gold Medal bill for the WWII Merchant Mariners cannot be considered for two years.
A RESOLUTION OF THE AMERICAN MERCHANT MARINE VETERANS, NATIONAL, SUPPORTING HR 1288 “WW II MERCHANT MARINERS SERVICE ACT”
WHEREAS, Public laws 95-202 and 105-368 bestowed veteran status on US Merchant Marine
Seamen of WWII.
WHEREAS, specific U.S. government actions by US government and certain social conditions have resulted in some 10,000 to 30,000 merchant seamen may have been denied their due recognition:
(1) The USCG relieved Masters of tugs, towboats and seagoing barges of the
responsibility submitting reports of seamen shipped and discharged and
(2) The National Maritime Administration ordered ships’ logbooks to be destroyed
because they were too costly to maintain and had removed the two main criteria
required by the government to issue official recognition to those seamen, and
(3) Some elderly and disabled seamen, some school children and some women served while being denied Official USCG credentials now required for proving service, and
WHEREAS, the average age of the remaining seamen is above 90 and the population of the US veteran is shrinking at an average of 1000 per year causing time to be of the essence, and
WHEREAS, Minimal costs are associated with this proposal and these funds should already have been included in above public laws, and
WHEREAS, The American Merchant Marine Veterans, National therefore requests that immediate action be taken to correct this recognized tragedy.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the American Merchant Marine Veterans, National, fully supports HR 1288 “WW II Merchant Mariners Service Act” and so orders that this Resolution be submitted to the Chairmen of the House Committees on Veteran Affairs and the Veteran Armed Services requesting their full support and approval, and move it toward the House for a favorable vote.
Adopted this 7th day of May, 2015
Morris Harvey, National VP
American Merchant Marine Veterans