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Niki Tsongas Newsletter: Paris Accords, 2018 Budget, BE HEARD Act

Jun 07, 2017 06:36AM ● By Theresa Gilman

Niki Tsongas

(Editor's Note: the following information was released by Congresswoman Niki Tsongas through her "Congress in Your Inbox" email.)

Last week our country marked Memorial Day, a time when Americans come together to honor the men and women who have fought and died in service to our country. Each year, we join in solemn thanks and remembrance, knowing that we live a life made possible by all they have sacrificed.

Memorial Day is also a time to thank our dedicated servicemembers currently serving across the globe, their families at home who await their safe return, our veterans and the wounded warriors whose lives have been forever changed by their experience of war. Their service and dedication are an inspiration and a challenge to us all.

This week, I will be traveling to Germany with a bipartisan delegation of Members of Congress. We are scheduled to meet with numerous German officials, including members of the country’s legislature, the Bundestag, as well as political, military, economic and business leaders. Meetings will cover several issues of mutual concern to both the United States and Germany, such as trade, counterterrorism, engagement with NATO, energy, foreign policy positions regarding Russia and China, and more. Germany is one of our strongest allies and a critically important international partner in many ways – economically, militarily and other important areas. This is a valuable experience for my colleagues and me, and our German counterparts, as we look to strengthen existing relationships.

Last week, I joined my colleague Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH) to introduce the BE HEARD Act, bipartisan legislation that would make it easier for survivors of military sexual assault to have their voices heard by expanding specialized training for military Special Victims’ Counsel (SVCs), providing military sexual assault survivors with better access to federal appellate courts to protect their procedural rights, and ensuring that the most vulnerable sexual assault survivors have someone to represent their legal interests throughout the military justice process. Read more about this new bill in this newsletter.

Also last week, President Trump released the full details of his proposed budget outline. I said it months ago when the President’s budget framework was released, and I’ll say it again today as we see the details filled in: President Trump’s budget puts the future of our country at risk in myriad ways. From massive cuts to Medicaid to slashing critical programs like Meals on Wheels, the President’s budget places a heavy burden on hardworking American families – many of whom are the President’s own supporters. Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle have already voiced serious concerns over many of the budget’s proposals because of the direct, negative impact they would have on people in every corner of America.

Also in this week’s newsletter, you can read about recent grants to local fire departments and my discussion about substance abuse at a recent Addiction Crisis Forum sponsored by the Societal Heroin Addiction Awareness Resource Project (SHAARP).

You can also find my full statement about President Trump's decision to withrdaw from the Paris Climate Accord.

As always, I look forward to your feedback via my website, or on Facebook and Twitter. Please follow along at those social media accounts, where you will find my most up-to-date statements and positions on recent happenings in Washington and the Third District.

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