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WPRC welcomes US bill focusing on warfare clothing
21
Dec '11
The Warrior Protection and Readiness Coalition (WPRC) applauded both passage of the FY 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and the bill's strong focus on warfighter clothing and equipment budgeting.

In the bill, Section 1094 requires that for the first time that the Military Departments provide an up-front, specific outline of their annual budget plans for the specialized products that protect warfighters from the enemy and the elements in theatre.

Beginning in FY2013, the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps will now provide the President, in their budget request, an overview of spending plans for Organizational Clothing and Individual Equipment (OCIE).

With military budgets facing cuts in coming years, the WPRC believes this language will place a new level of emphasis on the need to provide America's men and women in uniform with the best protective clothing and equipment.

As David Costello, Executive Director of the WPRC noted, "Over the past decade, the Department of Defense has made enormous progress in the development and fielding of protective clothing and equipment to the warfighter.

This success is a direct result of domestic industry rising to the task of properly outfitting those who bravely serve our country.

This new congressional requirement will give those companies, who manufacture in the US, much more predictability in terms of budget planning. Most importantly, it will help ensure that our men and women in uniform continue to receive the clothing and equipment that is essential to their mission success. This is a key step in making sure that these critical products and programs are sustained to meet future challenges."

For two years, the WPRC has been an advocate for the clothing and equipment needs of service members and for the industry that supports them.

A broad bi-partisan group of Representatives and Senators have supported the WPRC on this key issue. In particular, the WPRC is grateful for the leadership of House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard "Buck" McKeon (R-CA) and House Armed Services Committee Member Rep. Bill Owens (D-NY).

"This legislation helps ensure America's warfighters have the tools to stay safe, complete their mission, and secure the nation," said Congressman Owens. "It is absolutely critical that we continue to offer complete support to the men and women engaged in Afghanistan, even as America responsibly winds down the war in Iraq. "

"We have also taken steps in this legislation to help small businesses that do business with the Department of Defense better plan their operations by giving them a clearer sense of DoD's future needs."

The Warrior Protection and Readiness Coalition (WPRC)

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