Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed two of Congresswoman Deborah Ross’ (NC-02) amendments to support North Carolina veterans as part of H.R. 4366 - the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2024.

Congresswoman Ross’ first amendment would designate funding for the VA Education Benefits Program to provide support for veterans interested in pursuing undergraduate degrees in STEM fields. Her second would set aside resources for the VA Center for Women Veterans to research the high rate of postpartum depression in veterans who served in active-duty combat and to develop recommendations and services to address postpartum depression in this population.

Postpartum depression impacts approximately 13–26% of the general population, but studies have shown that women veterans are more likely to experience postpartum depression due to factors like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental health disorders after military service.

“Our service members put their lives on the line to serve and defend our country but far too often face barriers to accessing the resources they need – from health care to education,” said Congresswoman Ross. “After serving in combat, women service members who become pregnant experience higher rates of postpartum depression as a result of their service. My amendment will designate VA resources to begin to address this problem and help ensure that every woman veteran who is struggling can get the support she deserves.” 

Full text of the amendments can be found here