Military members could cancel services during deployment
By Alec Gray
INDIANAPOLIS – A Senate committee passed a bill on Tuesday that would give active duty National Guard members more protections at home during their term.
The Service Member Civil Release Act is a state extension of a federal statute that protects military members across the country. The state version would focus more on the National Guard.
House Bill 1456 would allow a deployed service member to cancel contracts for services that they are unable to use while on duty such as vehicle leases and phone contracts. They would still have to pay for services used up to their deployment.
Kent Morgan, representing the Disabled American Veterans, said soldiers already have enough to worry about while they are deployed.
“It’s important that we take the stress off of them in the battlefield,” Morgan said. “We don’t need any more stress on them because they have been in these battle fields numerous times.”
Indiana has the fourth largest National Guard in the country, which causes these issues to come up frequently according to Matt Light from the Office of the Attorney General.
The only concern brought up with the bill was to add military reserves into the language along with the National Guard.
Indiana has three categories of service members including active duty, National Guard, and the military reservists. Under the bill’s current language, reservists wouldn’t be covered.
“We need to take care of it, all veterans including our reserve component.”
Illinois, Kentucky, and Florida have all passed similar legislation. The bill passed the committee unanimously.
Alec Gray is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.