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S. 1767, A Bill to provide Federal Government aid for the readjustment in civilian life of returning World War II veterans (Servicemen’s Readjustment Act or the G.I. Bill of Rights), March 17, 1944

Congress approved the G.I. Bill of Rights, officially known as the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act, to reduce the risk of a postwar economic depression and widespread unemployment when veterans returned from overseas. The act was later amended to offer benefits to combat veterans of the Korean and Vietnam Wars; it has since been extended to all who have served in the armed forces.

Records of the U.S. Senate, National Archives and Records Administration

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Establishing the G.I. Bill of Rights

After its unanimous approval by the House and Senate, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the G.I. Bill of Rights into law on June 22, 1944. The legislation provided returning soldiers with unemployment insurance, money for post-secondary education and job training, and low-interest mortgages and loans to ease their transition into civilian life. By 1951 nearly 8 million veterans had received educational and training benefits, and 2.4 million had received loans for homes, farms, and businesses. Subsequent legislation would extend benefits to all who served in later conflicts.

This measure has for its purpose extending full justice and educational opportunities to the veterans of this war who have defended the Republic with their life and blood.

Representative Karl M. Le Compte of Iowa, Speech to the U.S. House of Representatives, May 12, 1944