Advisory: More Than 20 Vets to Allege Military Sexual Assaults
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Sept. 25, 2012
Advisory: More Than 20 Vets to Allege Military Sexual Assaults; Rep. Jackie Speier to Join Survivors, Advocates for News Conference – Friday
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – A new lawsuit will be filed Friday in San Francisco federal court on behalf of more than 20 U.S. Army and Air Force veterans who allege they were sexually assaulted during their military service.
The sexual assault survivors, who are from a dozen states, will bring suit against Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and the secretaries of the U.S. Army and the U.S. Navy, among others, alleging failure to protect them from rape and sexual assault while on active duty.
This is the fifth federal lawsuit of its kind filed by attorney Susan Burke whose work was featured in the groundbreaking documentary The Invisible War. Protect Our Defenders is collaborating with Ms. Burke on the lawsuits. Ms. Burke and the plaintiffs in the lawsuit will speak at a post-filing news conference. They will be joined by leading advocates from Protect Our Defenders and the American Association of University Women.
Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) will also join the news conference to speak about her efforts in Congress to reform the military justice system and the way it handles cases of rape and sexual assault. In November 2011, she introduced H.R. 3435, the Sexual Assault Training and Oversight Prevention Act (STOP Act) that would create an impartial office made up of civilian and military experts within the military to review cases of rape and sexual assault. The bill has 133 bipartisan cosponsors.
• A post-filing news conference with lawsuit plaintiffs, their legal counsel, and leading advocates of reform of the military justice system.
• Congresswoman Jackie Speier will discuss the STOP Act and its status in Congress.
• Veterans participating in the lawsuit
• Congresswoman Jackie Speier
• Susan Burke, Burke PLLC, Washington, D.C., lead counsel for the survivors
• Katie Weber, Advocacy Board Member, Protect Our Defenders
• Kathleen Cha, Director, American Association of University Women
Friday, Sept. 28, 2012, 11:30 a.m.
Alumni Reception Center
UC Hastings College of the Law
200 McAllister St, San Francisco, CA, 94102
Powers MediaWorks LLC
For Burke PLLC
Office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier