Committee to Consider National Guard Youth Challenge Program

The Senate Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee will meet Wednesday (December 9) to consider legislation that would create the National Guard Youth Challenge Program, according to Committee Chairman Senator Randy Vulakovich.

The meeting is set for 10 a.m. in Room 461 of the Main Capitol, Senate Bill 56, sponsored by Senator Stewart Greenleaf (R-Montgomery), would establish the program in Pennsylvania, where members of the National Guard would run the education and training.

Now in 27 states, Washington DC and Puerto Rico, the National Guard Youth Challenge Program provides a structured/quasi-military education to at-risk youths, ages 16 to 18.   It is a free, voluntary, 5 ½ -month program that helps young people who drop out of school earn their high school diploma or GED.

The Committee will also consider three resolutions.

Senate Resolution 156 would establish a task force on Women’s Veterans’ Health Care to address the needs of our Pennsylvania’s growing female veteran population.

Senate Resolution 254 urges Congress to pass federal House Resolution 2894, the “Caregivers Access and Responsible Expansion (CARE) for All Veterans Act.”  Current federal law provides support to caregivers of post 9/11 veterans.  HR 2894 would provide support to all caregivers of veterans and not just those assisting post-9/11 veterans.

Senate Resolution 255 calls on the Joint State Government Commission to compile a comprehensive listing of programs benefitting active duty service members, Guard, veterans and their families.  The study will also look at services offered by veterans’ organizations such as the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. It will also look at benefits offered by other states.

Contact: Nate Silcox (717) 787-6538

More information about state issues is available at Senator Vulakovich’s website, or on Facebook at