June 13, 2019
Contact: Brian Purchia, 202.253.4330, firstname.lastname@example.org
PROTECT OUR DEFENDERS CALLS ON CONGRESS TO PASS MJIA & REFORM BROKEN MILITARY JUSTICE SYSTEM
Empowering military prosecutors would instill accountability and transparency and bring justice to survivors of military sexual assault
Washington DC – Today, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand re-introduced the Military Justice Improvement Act (MJIA), which focuses on comprehensive reform of the broken military justice system. Countless headlines have confirmed the persistent failure of the status quo to address the epidemic of sexual assault and harassment that only grows worse every year. The bipartisan MJIA would professionalize how the military prosecutes serious crimes such as sexual assault and murder, and take a vital step towards removing the systemic barriers that survivors of military sexual assault describe in coming forward to report the crimes committed against them.
Protect Our Defenders thanks Senator Gillibrand and all the bill’s co-sponsors including Senators Richard Blumenthal, Ted Cruise, Tammy Duckworth, Chuck Grassley, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Rand Paul, and Elizabeth Warren for their efforts, and calls on Congress to pass MJIA. Fundamental reform will finally address military leadership’s failures that have led to the sexual assault crisis, and give servicewomen and men the fair and just legal process they deserve.
Col. Don Christensen (ret.), the former Chief Prosecutor of the United State Air Force and President of Protect Our Defenders, released the following statement:
“Protect Our Defenders proudly supports the Military Justice Improvement Act. Despite decades of promises from military leadership to end the scourge of military sexual assault, the crisis has only worsened. While the rate of sexual assault continues to climb, prosecutions under the commander controlled system have plummeted. Quite simply, the status quo has failed. By empowering military prosecutors, MJIA will bring accountability for those who commit these heinous crimes and justice for survivors.”
Comprehensive Resource Center for the Military Justice Improvement Act:
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s Press Release: