S.772 - Honor Act of 2009111th Congress (2009-2010)
Summary: S.772 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)
Introduced in Senate (04/01/2009)
Honor Act of 2009 - Directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to carry out a program to provide scholarships for the pursuit of a graduate or postgraduate degree in behavioral health sciences to veterans who performed active-duty service in a theater of combat or during a contingency operation overseas. Requires the veteran, following completion of the degree requirements, to serve for an agreed-upon period with either the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) or Department of Defense (DOD) furnishing mental health services to veterans or to members of the Armed Forces (members).
Directs the Secretary of Defense to carry out a program to employ and train former members who performed service described above as DOD psychiatric technicians and nurses providing mental health counseling and related services to members deployed to a combat zone.
Directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, upon request, to provide: (1) referral and related assistance to former members not otherwise authorized for counseling through the VA; and (2) readjustment counseling and mental health services to former members through Vet Centers.
Requires the suicide of a former member with a medical history of a combat-related mental health condition, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or traumatic brain injury (TBI) that occurs within a two-year period after separation or retirement to be treated as a death in the line of active duty for purposes of eligibility for active-duty survivors' benefits provided through the VA.
Requires the Secretaries of Defense and Veterans Affairs, jointly and annually, to: (1) review and assess their respective programs for the reintegration of members and veterans into civilian life following their retirement, discharge, or release; and (2) report review and assessment results to Congress.