S. Con. Res. 46, Expressing support for the goal of ensuring that all Holocaust victims live with dignity, comfort, and security in their remaining years, and urging the Federal Republic of Germany to continue to reaffirm its commitment to comprehensively address the unique health and welfare needs of vulnerable Holocaust victims, including home care and other medically prescribed needs

S.Con.Res. 46

Expressing support for the goal of ensuring that all Holocaust victims live with dignity, comfort, and security in their remaining years, and urging the Federal Republic of Germany to continue to reaffirm its commitment to comprehensively address the unique health and welfare needs of vulnerable Holocaust victims, including home care and other medically prescribed needs

Sponsor
Sen. Bill Nelson

Date
September 12, 2016 (114th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Monday, September 12, 2016, the House will consider S. Con. Res. 46, Expressing support for the goal of ensuring that all Holocaust victims live with dignity, comfort, and security in their remaining years, and urging the Federal Republic of Germany to continue to reaffirm its commitment to comprehensively address the unique health and welfare needs of vulnerable Holocaust victims, including home care and other medically prescribed needs. The concurrent resolution was introduced in the Senate on July 12, 2016 by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) and was referred to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, which ordered the resolution reported without an amendment and with a preamble on July 14, 2016. The Senate passed the concurrent resolution by unanimous consent on July 14, 2016, and the concurrent resolution was subsequently referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on July 18, 2016.

 

Bill Summary

S.Con. Res. 46 is resolved that the House of Representatives:

  • Acknowledges the financial and moral commitment of the Federal Republic of Germany over the past seven decades to provide a measure of justice for Holocaust victims; and
  • Supports the goal of ensuring that all Holocaust victims in the United States and around the world can live with dignity, comfort, and security in their remaining years.

The House passed similar legislation on June 7, 2016. The legislative digest for H.Con.Res 129 can be found here.

Background

To this day, the systematic extermination of 6,000,000 Jews during the Holocaust and the additional murder of millions of others by the Nazi Germany states remains one of the modern world’s most tragic, heinous, and senseless crimes against humanity. Despite this mass annihilation that cruelly subjected the Jewish population to the high probability of murder, mass imprisonment, slave labor, torture, or oppressive and sometimes clandestine lifestyles, hundreds of thousands of Jews managed to survive persecution and death by the Nazi regime. Nonetheless, those who managed to escape the Nazi Regime still fled their homes and families in fear of the high likelihood of death at the hands of the widespread “Nazi Killing Squads.” Regardless of what specific kind of persecution suffered by the Jews who witnessed the Holocaust, they all shared irreparably shattered lifestyles and a constant, lingering fear for their lives and lives of their loved ones.[1]

Between 1933 and today, many Holocaust victims have emigrated from Europe to the United States, the Middle East, North Africa, and the former Soviet Union. Currently, there are at least 100,000 Holocaust victims still living in the United States and an estimated 500,000 other Holocaust victims living around the world; tens of thousands of these victims are at least 80 years old and an estimated 50 percent of these victims will likely pass away within the next decade. Therefore, despite surviving the atrocities and violence of the Holocaust, these victims around the world continue to suffer from permanent physical disabilities, emotional scarring, and other psychological injuries on a daily-basis. Many of these physical, emotional, and psychological pains are only made worse and more severe throughout the aging process. Furthermore, because of old age and emigration away from home, these victims suffer from isolation and often lack nearby family and other support networks necessary for trauma-centered healthcare services, a high quality of life, and overall peace of mind.[2]

In 1951, German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer first recognized that it was Germany’s commitment to provide sufficient moral and financial compensation to living Holocaust victims around the world. Since that initial acknowledgement, every succeeding German Chancellor has reaffirmed the same ongoing national responsibility. Most recently, in 2015, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesperson confirmed that, “all Germans know the history of the murderous race mania of the Nazis that led to the break with civilization that was the Holocaust…we know the responsibility for this crime against humanity is Germany and very much our own.” Additionally, Congress has since acknowledged Germany’s moral and seven-decade-long commitment to comprehensively, perpetually, and expeditiously procure support for the medical, psychological, and other long-term care needs of all surviving Holocaust victims worldwide.[3]

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[1] See S. Con. Res. 46, at 1-2.
[2] Id. 2-3.
[3] Id, 3-4.

Cost

A Congressional Budget Office (CBO) cost estimate is not available at this time.

Additional Information

For questions or further information on the bill, contact John Wilson with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 6-1811.