Senator optimistic for passage of sex assault bill - US Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand thinks she has the votes to pass legislation that would remove commanders from sexual assault investigations, and says a vote could come as soon as this week.
In the News: Military Sex Assault Trial Showcases 2 Approaches to Prosecution - As one major battle over sexual assault in the military plays out in North Carolina this week, another is set to unfold in Washington. Lawmakers in Washington are expected to take up debate on a far-reaching rewrite of military law that would strip commanders of the power to decide which allegations of sexual assault and other serious crimes go to trial, and turn that power over to military prosecutors.
In the News: Long-Delayed Military Sexual Assault Bills Scheduled for Senate Debate - Senate leaders have agreed to allow floor debate on two long-delayed bills aimed at reforming how the military handles sexual assault cases.
In the News: Survey Finds More Support for Veterans and Military Students at Public Colleges
In the News: Fewer Army women want combat-related jobs- A survey of the Army’s nearly 170,000 women showed that less than 8 percent of the 30,000 who responded said they wanted a combat job. Of those, an overwhelming number said they would like to be a Night Stalker — a member of elite special-operations helicopter crews.
OpEd: Our Military: Fighting To Keep Its Culture of Abuse - Our military commanders should show courage and let go of authority over sexual assault cases, end retaliation for reporting and eliminate the abuse culture, says Vietnam veteran Sarah L. Blum.
In the News: The Courage of Transgender Soldiers - Why does the U.S. military still define gender nonconformity as a disorder? Nine percent of transgender people who have served in the American military report being discharged because of being transgender or gender nonconforming. Almost all of the rest stay quiet for fear of harassment or abuse.
In the News: Sen. Gillibrand: The Deck Is Stacked Against Sexual Assault Victims
In the News: Military Families' Reliance On Food Stamps Hit a Record High Last Year - Military families were more reliant on food stamps in 2013 than in any previous year, according to a Department of Defense (DOD) review that found over $100 million in food stamps spending at military grocery stores last year.
In the News: Congress passes bill repealing retirement cuts for younger military veterans - A bill repealing cuts to the cost-of-living adjustments for the retirement pay of military veterans is now in the hands of the White House, having passed both houses of Congress.
In the News: Bill Would Require Military Health Plans To Cover Breastfeeding Services, Supplies - Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) introduced a bill (S 1994) that would require the military's health insurance program, called TRICARE, to cover breastfeeding counseling and equipment.
In the News: Judgments random in US military sex-crimes in Japan - At U.S. military bases in Japan, most service members found culpable in sex crimes in recent years did not go to prison, according to internal Department of Defense documents. Instead, in a review of hundreds of cases filed in America's largest overseas military installation, offenders were fined, demoted, restricted to their bases or removed from the military.
In the News: VA launches new tool for military to compare GI Bill benefits - A new tool for military personnel and veterans to compare the value of their GI Bill benefits at schools across the country was launched Tuesday. The website breaks down the amount of tuition and fee assistance covered, along with housing allowance and book stipend, based on the soldier’s length of service and subsequent eligibility for Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits.
In the News: Following Student Veterans - Federal agency releases new college comparison site for student veterans and data about where they are enrolled, earning praise from both for-profit colleges and their critics.
In the News: Minnesota Law Substitutes Military Test for Graduation Requirement - In Minnesota, radical changes to graduation testing requirements make it easier for high school students' personal information to be sent to military recruiters without parental consent. There are no privacy protections built into Minnesota's new law.
In the News: Veterans group says military suicide rate is 'out of control' - Suicide prevention is the No. 1 legislative priority this year for the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, says Paul Rieckhoff, the group's founder and CEO. His New York-based organization, with 270,000 members, also supports the effort by Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York to have military prosecutors rather than commanders make decisions on whether to prosecute sexual assault cases in the armed forces.
In the News: Vets push Congress for fix to pension cut - More than a dozen bills have been introduced in both chambers to repeal the cut, which reduces the annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) by 1 percentage point below inflation for retirees younger than 62. The change would take effect in December 2015.
In the News: VETERANS DYING BECAUSE OF HEALTH CARE DELAYS - U.S. veterans are dying because of delays in diagnosis and treatment at VA hospitals.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs launched a Women Veterans hotline – 1.855.VA.WOMEN (829.6636) – to help women veterans and their families learn about the department's healthcare services and resources.
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