Press Release

Ahead Of Veterans Day, Gillibrand Announces 500,000 Veterans Exposed To Burn Pits & Other Toxins Have Had Their PACT Act Claims Approved, Encourages Others To Apply 

Nov 8, 2023

So Far, More Than 26,000 New Yorkers Have Filed Claims; Thousands More Are Potentially Eligible For Benefits 

Ahead of Veterans Day, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand held a video press conference urging veterans exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange, and other toxic substances during their service to apply for health benefits through the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring our PACT Act of 2022. The PACT Act provides expanded health care and benefits to veterans suffering from illness caused by exposure to burn pits and other toxic substances while serving abroad. These burn pits-related medical conditions are presumptively service-connected, meaning that veterans no longer have to provide proof that their disease is service-related in order to receive benefits. 

The PACT Act has already helped over half a million veterans nationwide get life changing healthcare and disability benefits,” said Senator Gillibrand. “But thousands more have yet to apply. I’m urging any veteran who was exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange, or other toxic substances – even if they were previously denied coverage – to apply for PACT Act benefits today. As always, my office is here to answer questions and to help with the application process.”

Veterans can apply for PACT Act benefits at If their claim was previously denied, but their condition is now considered presumptive, they can file a Supplemental Claim online or by mail. A full list of presumptive conditions and locations is available here

Veterans who need help with their applications can call the VA’s 24/7 helpline at 800-698-2411, reach out to their local Veterans Service Organization (VSO), or contact Senator Gillibrand’s office at

Senator Gillibrand was a leading champion of the PACT Act. Her bill, the Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act, forms the centerpiece of the legislation.