Protect Our Defenders News Blog


MSNBC: Obama admin: Freedom from sexual assault a basic human right

MSNBC reports:

Obama last month gave military leaders a year to conduct a comprehensive review of the establishment’s sexual assault response and prevention programs after several high-profile military cases drew public scrutiny throughout 2013. He ordered Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey to submit their findings this year by Dec. 1.

Recorded assaults within the armed forces increased by more than 50% last year. There were more than 5,000 reported incidents between Oct. 1, 2012 and Sept. 30, 2013.

Congress enacted the Violence Against Women Act in 1994 under the leadership of then-senator Joe Biden, thus recognizing the severity of attacks against women and the need for a national strategy. Last March the president signed the third re-authorization of the act to include federal protections to combat assault for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals, as well as Native Americans and immigrants. It also imposed new obligations on colleges and universities to address and prevent sexual violence.

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