GI Bill Improvement Act of 1977
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TITLE IV—WOMEN’S AIR FORCES SERVICE PILOTS
Sec. 401. [38 U.S.C. 106 note] (a)(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the service of any person as a member of the Women’s Air Forces Service Pilots (a group of Federal civilian employees attached to the United States Army Air Force during World War II), or the service of any person in any other similarly situated group the members of which rendered service to the Armed Forces of the United States in a capacity considered civilian employment or contractual service at the time such service was rendered, shall be considered active duty for the purposes of all laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs if the Secretary of Defense, pursuant to regulations which the Secretary shall prescribe—
(A) after a full review of the historical records and all other available evidence pertaining to the service of any such group, determines, on the basis of judicial and other appropriate precedent, that the service of such group constituted active military service, and
(B) in the case of any such group with respect to which such Secretary has made an affirmative determination that the service of such group constituted active military service, issues to each member of such group a discharge from such service under honorable conditions where the nature and duration of the service of such member so warrants.
Discharges issued pursuant to the provisions of the first sentence of this paragraph shall designate as the date of discharge that date, as determined by the Secretary of Defense, on which such service by the person concerned was terminated.
(2) In making a determination under clause (A) of paragraph (1) of this subsection with respect to any group described in such paragraph, the Secretary of Defense may take into consideration the extent to which—
(A) such group received military training and acquired a military capability or the service performed by such group was critical to the success of a military mission,
(B) the members of such group were subject to military justice, discipline, and control,
(C) the members of such group were permitted to resign,
(D) the members of such group were susceptible to assignment for duty in a combat zone, and
(E) the members of such group had reasonable expectations that their service would be considered to be active military service.
(b)(1) No benefits shall be paid to any person for any period prior to the date of enactment of this title as a result of the enactment of subsection (a) of this section.
(2) The provisions of section 106(a)(2) of title 38, United States Code, relating to election of benefits, shall be applicable to persons made eligible for benefits, under laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, as a result of implementation of the provisions of subsection (a) of this section.
(c) Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of Defense, any person who is issued a discharge under honorable conditions pursuant to the implementation of subsection (a) of this section may be awarded any campaign or service medal warranted by such person’s service.
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[Internal Reference.—SSAct §210(l)(2) has a footnote referring to P.L. 95-202.]