Bill could send clothes from abandoned luggage to homeless vets
December 3, 2012By Emma Jacobs
U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pennsylvania) wants to enlist the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) to clothe homeless veterans.
""Miscellaneous things that are perfectly useful but for whatever reason people leave it behind and never claim it," explained Toomey at a veterans' center in Center City Philadelphia this morning.
"This bill would instruct the TSA to take all of those articles and hand them over to one of the organizations across the country that are serving veterans."
Toomey calls the "Clothe a Homeless Hero Act" a modest measure. But he says, it would touch individuals and bring visibility to the plight of homeless vets.
Toomey also has a bill outstanding that would launch an online job search site for vets. The senator was criticized in the months leading up to the election by people, including Rachel Maddow, for joining the Republican caucus in opposition to the Democratically-introduced "Veteran Jobs Corps Act."
Republicans said the job training programs in the program exceeded allowed expenditures.
The bill also would have created the online jobs portal Toomey proposed.
Toomey is co-sponsoring the clothing legislation with Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York). A version of the bill has already passed the house.
Sgt. Robert Mansfield, who served in Iraq, was on hand when Toomey discussed the legislation at the vet center. Mansfield agreed the clothing bill is a small step, but said he appreciates any offer of help.
"Once we deal with some of the small issues, then we can deal with bigger issues," he said.