INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It’s Legion Day at the Indiana Statehouse and the Indiana House of Representatives is partnering with the Indiana Legion to make bags for homeless vets.
In the last year, the number of Hoosier veterans without permanent housing increased 6 percent.
In the web extra video above, we talk with one of the Legion members at the event.
These items are being put into bags for homeless veterans in Indiana. The number of Hoosier veterans without permanent housing increased 6% in the last year. That’s one reason the Indiana House of Representatives helped make these care packages for Legion Day at the Statehouse. pic.twitter.com/i5V1eehry7
— Kayla Sullivan (@KaylaReporting) February 10, 2020
We asked House leaders what other actions they are taking to help.
“There’s some benefit bills that are proceeding through the General Assembly and we are taking a close look at those,” said House Speaker Brian Bosma. "But we've actually done so much, it's hard to find something because we have done so much for our veterans here over the last decade."
House Minority Leader Phil GiaQuinta also weighed in saying, "While often democrats and republicans we might debate or fight on some issues on the House floor, we certainly agree to do everything we can when it comes to our hoosier veterans to help them out,” said GiaQuinta.
The Indiana Legion says any efforts to help are appreciated.
Department Commander Allen Connelly said, "We can just keep trying to get every veteran off the streets and into some housing.”
Bosma said more than 7,000 items were collected during this drive.
"That may be a new record for us on one of these efforts," said Bosma. "And we’ll put together hundreds of care packages for veterans who come into contact with veterans groups.”
One of those groups is called Helping Veterans and Families or HVAF. Community Engagement Director Robert White stressed the importance of staying involved beyond this event.
"The need is still great, if you have an opportunity to help, we encourage you to find an organization that is helping veterans,” said White.
The Indiana Legion is thankful for the extra help but they hope lawmakers continue to work on reducing the number of homeless veterans.
“Even one is too large of a number,” said Connelly.
There’s also a social media campaign designed to spread awareness, you can participate through #HelpHoosierHeroes.