SACRAMENTO (AP) — California may start giving legal help to veterans who have been deported.

The state Assembly passed a bill Monday to provide legal representation for people who were honorably discharged from the military but have since been deported.

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Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher says her bill is intended to help deported veterans return to the country.

The San Diego Democrat says the bill would help them reunite with their families and access health services and other benefits.

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She says many deported veterans would have been eligible to become naturalized citizens but were not properly informed about the process.

The bill directs the state to contract with a nonprofit legal services organization.

AB386 passed the Assembly without any dissenting votes and now goes to the Senate.

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