Sen. Santana’s effort to honor state’s brave servicewomen earned bipartisan support and comes a day before Women Veterans Recognition Day in Michigan 

LANSING, Mich. (June 11, 2024) — Garnering bipartisan support, the Michigan Senate voted today to pass a bill introduced by Sen. Sylvia Santana (D-Detroit) that would authorize a special registration plate for women veterans in the state of Michigan.

The bill, Senate Bill 788, is aimed at further recognizing the contributions of Michigan’s women veteran community and bringing equitable awareness to the sacrifices they have made for our state and country.

“When people see the word ‘veteran’ on a license plate, it’s not uncommon to mistakenly assume the title belongs to a man or male passenger in the vehicle, but we know that is increasingly not always the case,” Sen. Santana said. “This legislation, as simple as it may seem, is another way we can all do better at recognizing women veterans in our communities and offering them the proper gratitude and respect they’ve earned and deserve. I am proud to help in this way and am excited to see the new plates on the road.”

With more than 46,000 women veterans, Michigan is home to the 15th-largest women veteran population in the country, according to the U. S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs. While women only accounted for 4% of the veteran population nationally in 2000, they are projected to comprise 18% by 2040 — making them the fastest growing segment of the veteran population. 

Currently, the state of Michigan provides 30 license plates for veterans and their loved ones — recognizing wounded veterans, Gold Star families, reservists and many others. This legislation would allow Michigan to join 17 other states who provide a special registration plate to specifically honor women veterans for their sacrifice.

Sen. Santana currently serves on the Senate Veterans and Emergency Services Committee and is deeply committed to supporting all veterans who call Michigan home. Last year, she championed Senate Bill 176 which, along with Senate Bill 330, protects the property tax exemption for disabled veterans and their surviving spouses. She has also supported legislative efforts to recognize Blue Star Mother’s Day and voted in favor of House Bill 4555, which permanently established June 12 as Women Veterans Recognition Day in Michigan.