Not Invisible Staff

followed Take Action 2014-05-28 18:53:08 -0400

Sign the Petition

33,486 signatures

Tell Congress: Take Action To Protect Survivors of Military Sexual Assault

The U.S. Congress must act swiftly to move the decision to investigate, prosecute, and punish sexual assault in the military out of the chain of command.

Every year, 19,000 service men and women are sexually assaulted while serving in the United States Military. But 86% of them never report their assault―too often because seeking justice threatens their safety, their job security and their future.

Seeking justice should never be a risk, and rape should never be an “occupational hazard.”

It’s time to take action so that survivors of military sexual assault are protected from such egregious acts and sexual predators are brought to justice. Survivors should not suffer retribution for speaking up.

Congress must amend the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and move the prosecution of military sexual assault out of the chain of command.

Only Congress can change the UCMJ to create a real, working system for prosecuting sexual predators in the military.

Add your name to tell Congress to move criminal prosecution of military sexual assault out of the chain of command.


published Policy in Policy 2012-06-26 13:46:00 -0400

Policy

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Congressman Michael R. Turner Third District of OhioTurner.House.Gov

For Immediate Release: June 26, 2012 Contact: Tom Crosson Cell: (202) 450-7398


Turner Requests Immediate Briefing from General on Widespread Sexual Assault Issues at Lackland AFB

Current Investigation Suggests Severe Breakdown in Chain of Command


 
Washington D.C. – Today, Congressman Mike Turner wrote to General Edward A. Rice Jr., Commander of Air Education and Training Command, to request an immediate briefing regarding widespread sexual assault allegations at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, TX. This is particularly alarming because it was perpetrated by military training instructors (MTIs) on recruits.  

“The nature of their position grants MTIs a great deal of authority over young and impressionable recruits,” wrote Turner. “During this process recruits should be learning the leadership values requisite to build the finest Air Force in the world. Instead, it appears that a systemic breakdown led to the creation of an environment that harbored the basest level of criminal activity at an unimaginable scale.”

Turner is a Co-Chairman of the Sexual Assault Prevention Caucus in Congress. As a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee he has focused this important issue which impacts our servicemembers. This Congress, he introduced the Defense Sexual Trauma Response and Good Governance (STRONG) Act. Many of this bill’s provisions were included in the FY 2012 National Defense Authorization Act and have become law.  
 
“Sexual assault has tremendous detrimental effects on both the victim and the unit.  Its presence impacts readiness and morale while degrading the reputation of the Servicemembers that defend our nation.  Over the past several years I have worked diligently with my colleagues in the House Armed Services Committee to implement laws to prevent sexual assault and protect the Servicemembers victimized by this violent crime,” added Turner.
 

NOTE: The letter to General Edward A. Rice Jr. follows below.
 
June 26, 2012

 

 

General Edward A. Rice Jr.  

Air Education and Training Command

HQ AETC
100 H Street, Ste. 4
Randolph AFB, TX 78150-4331

 

 Dear General Rice:

In April of this year during a congressional staff delegation to Air Force installations in San Antonio, a member of my staff learned of ongoing issues concerning the sexual assault of Air Force trainees.  Recent Air Force disclosures, however, have demonstrated that the problems were far more widespread and severe than originally anticipated.

 
Sexual assault has tremendous detrimental effects on both the victim and the unit.  Its presence impacts readiness and morale while degrading the reputation of the Servicemembers that defend our nation.  Over the past several years I have worked diligently with my colleagues in the House Armed Services Committee to implement laws to prevent sexual assault and protect the Servicemembers victimized by this violent crime.
 
The recent criminal activity is particularly alarming because it was perpetrated by military training instructors (MTI) on recruits.  The nature of their position grants MTIs a great deal of authority over young and impressionable recruits.  During this process recruits should be learning the leadership values requisite to build the finest Air Force in the world.  Instead, it appears that a systemic breakdown led to the creation of an environment that harbored the basest level of criminal activity at an unimaginable scale.
 
While I understand that the Air Force is actively investigating this matter, it is important for Congress to understand the conditions that allowed it to happen.  Consequently, I request an immediate briefing on the matter.
 
I appreciate your attention to these concerns and look forward to discussing the matter in person.

Sincerely,

           

Michael R. Turner                                                        
Member of Congress   


The Invisible War: There is strength in numbers

 

I’m on the email list for the folks who made the outstanding documentary, “The Invisible War,” a film about the crisis of sexual assaults within the U.S. military. I’m interviewed in the film because of my work covering the issue, primarily the series I coauthored at the Denver Post called “Betrayal in the Ranks.”

And right now, I’m hopeful, because it seems like this time, real change is going to happen, not just the empty promises we heard after our series ran. So please, read the email below from Invisible War director Kirby Dick and producer Amy Ziering, and take a moment to be a part of this movement. There’s real momentum now–so don’t let it die.

Thanks,

Amy Herdy, Diary of a Predator


published Healing in Resources 2012-05-31 17:40:46 -0400

Healing

Give an Hour

Developing national networks of volunteers capable of responding to both acute and chronic conditions that arise within our society.

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Operation Warrior Wellness

The David Lynch Foundation’s Women’s Initiative provides women veterans with the stress-reducing Transcendental Meditation technique to help them heal from traumatic stress and find inner peace, creativity and strength within themselves.  

Boston Area Rape Crisis Center

The only rape crisis center in the Greater Boston area, serving 29 cities and towns, and our service area includes USCG District 1 Boston and Hanscom AFB. We provide free and confidential services to survivors of sexual violence of any gender, their families, friends, and communities, and welcome active duty, reserve, and veteran service members.

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Educated Canines Assisting with Disabilities (ECAD)

Providing Services Dogs to our Veterans under its program Project HEAL. We are reaching out to our female veterans.

 

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Canines With A Cause

A non-profit organization with the mission of helping shelter dogs find homes by training them to work as companion, therapy and service dogs for veterans in need.  

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Fatigues Clothesline Project

An awareness and art-based therapy program for military sexual trauma (MST) survivors and their families, a program to create a dialog between survivors and group leaders, counselors as well as family members.

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Healing Combat Trauma

Therapeutic resources for veterans with combat-based Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder ("PTSD"), focused on integrative medicine and hope.

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The Institute for Rapid Resolution Therapy

Providing trauma training and certification for mental health and medical professionals to assist them in eliminating the effects of trauma in the lives of those they serve.

The Soliders Project

The Soldiers Project is a 501(c)(3) organization that provides free, unlimited, confidential psychological counseling to those who have served or expect to serve in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as to their loved ones. We treat in the private practices of licensed insured therapists with the utmost respect for the privacy and dignity of each individual.

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There and Back Again: Yoga for Veterans and Re-integration Support

A nonprofit organization that supports the well-being of service-members, providing free reintegration support services to combat veterans of all conflicts.

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Yoga for Vets: National Network of Free Yoga Classes for Veterans

A non-profit organization that exists to welcome home war veterans and help them cope with stress of combat through yoga instruction. The Yoga For Vets website lists studios, teachers, and venues throughout the country that offer four or more free classes to war veterans

 


published Helplines in Resources 2012-05-31 17:35:56 -0400

Helplines

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National Sexual Assault Hotline (RAINN) 

Free, confidential, 24/7: Call 1.800.656.HOPE to be connected to your local rape crisis center or chat online with a trained RAINN staff member: online.rainn.org

 

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DoD Safe Helpline — operated by RAINN on behalf of the Department of Defense

Sexual Assault support for the DoD Community: 24/7, confidential, worldwide access. Call 877-995-5247 or visit www.safehelpline.org

Note: RAINN will not share your name or any other personally identifying information with DoD or your chain of command  

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Peace Over Violence
Rape and battering hotlines providing information, support, referrals, accompaniments, advocacy, counseling, and self-defense. This hotline is available 24/7: 626-793-3385 or 310-392-8381 or 213-626-3393

 

(SWAN) Legal and Peer Support Helpline for Veterans

Helping callers navigate advocacy, legislation and MST services. This hotline is available Monday-Friday 10am - 6pm EST: 888-729-2089

 

The Rape Crisis Center

Crisis intervention center that provides crisis counseling and hospital accompaniment services.  This hotline is available 24/7: by phone 210-349-7273

 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 

Free and confidential, nationwide network of crisis centers. This hotline is available 24/7: 800-273-TALK

 

National Sexual Violence Resource Center 

Online directory highlights the many organizations and projects working to eliminate sexual violence.


published Advocacy in Resources 2012-05-31 17:34:00 -0400

Advocacy

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Protect Out Defenders

Grassroots Organizing, Amplify Survivor's Voices Through Storytelling, Advocacy, Survivor Support Services Network, Lawsuits, MST Forums.

 

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National Veterans Legal Services Program

A not for profit organization dedicated to ensuring that the government delivers to our nation’s veterans the benefits to which they are entitled because of disabilities resulting from their service. NVLSP provides free legal representation to veterans whose disability claims for PTSD resulting from military sexual trauma (MST) have been denied by the VA.

 

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA)

The country's first and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization for veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 

 

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Service Women's Action Network (SWAN)

Advocacy, Legislation and Healing programs for Veterans with focus on MST

 

 

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AAUW Legal Fund 

Community and campus outreach programs, a resource library and online advocacy tools, a Legal Referral Network, and various research reports for combating sex discrimination in higher education and the workplace.

 

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Burke PLLC

A civil rights law firm located in Washington, D.C. Attorney Susan Burke and her colleagues are dedicated to ensuring that victims of rape and sexual assault obtain justice. Beginning in February of 2011, Burke began filing a series of lawsuits seeking justice for those who were raped or sexually assaulted during their military service, and endured retaliation and harassment. For information on assisting or participating in the lawsuits, please contact Miranda Petersen (lead paralegal) at 202-386-9631.

 

 

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National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence

The National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence (NCDSV) designs, provides, and customizes training and consultation, influences policy, promotes collaboration and enhances diversity with the goal of ending domestic and sexual violence.

NCDSV trains and consults with the Department of Defense, the Military Services and the U.S. Coast Guard. NCDSV also advocates with those same entities as well as with Congress for improved prevention and intervention policies for domestic and sexual violence by co-chairing the Military Committee of the National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.

 

 

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Peace Over Violence

Rape and battering hotlines providing information, support, referrals, accompaniments, advocacy, counseling, and self-defense. This hotline is available 24/7: 626-793-3385 or 310-392-8381 or 213-626-3393

 

 

UltraViolet

UltraViolet is a community of women and men, fighting to expand women's rights and combat sexism everywhere - from politics and government to media and pop culture.

 

Futures Without Violence

Futures Without Violence works to prevent and end violence against women and children around the world. From domestic and dating violence, to child abuse and sexual assault, Futures Without Violence works to advance the health, stability, education, and security of women and girls, men and boys worldwide.

 

 

WMC Women Under Siege

WMC Women Under Siege documents how rape and other forms of sexualized violence are used as strategic tools in genocide and conflict from the 20th century onward. In the belief that understanding what happened previously might have helped us prevent or prepare for the mass sexual assaults of other conflicts, from Bosnia to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the project is exploring this linkage to heighten public consciousness of causes and preventions.

 

 

Equality Now

Equality Now works for the protection and promotion of the human rights of women and girls around the world. Working with grassroots women’s and human rights organizations and individual activists since 1992, Equality Now documents violence and discrimination against women and mobilizes international action to support efforts to stop these abuses.

 

 

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NYCLU

The Reproductive Rights program of the New York Civil Liberties Union (RRP) is the only New York State-based legal organization that focuses on reproductive rights. RRP defines reproductive rights broadly to include not only abortion rights and access, but also birth control, reproductive and sexual health, equal treatment of pregnant and parenting women in employment and education, comprehensive and medically accurate sex and HIV/AIDS education, and patient privacy. 


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