On the 20th anniversary of 9/11, Governor Kathy Hochul has proposed legislation that would allow National Guard members to qualify as veterans under New York State law. Governor Hochul has also issued a Citation honoring members of the New York National Guard for their exemplary service both during and after the events of September 11, 2001.

“Many New York National Guard members who responded on 9/11 are not eligible for important support services and valuable federal and state benefits because they were called to duty that day by a state emergency order and not on federal active duty,” Governor Hochul said. “On the 20th anniversary of 9/11, I am introducing legislation that will ensure that all of the National Guard members who were ordered into service at Ground Zero, and who have not otherwise earned Veteran status through federal activation, are fully recognized as Veterans under New York State law. The New York National Guard was there for us on that dark day, and we will be there for them.”

Over 6,700 New York State National Guard members were called to serve in response to and recovery from the attack on Sept. 11, 2001. This is the first time in the state’s history National Guard members are being recognized for that service twenty years ago.