As the world celebrates women on International Women’s Day, the Service Women’s Action Network pauses to thank you for supporting the work we do on behalf of our nation’s women warriors.

After what can only be described as a national media thunderstorm around last month’s military rape, sexual assault, and sexual harassment lawsuit, we’d like to introduce you to the first of many upcoming legislative victories that SWAN has spearheaded this year in Congress.

Based on SWAN’s recommendations, Representative Chellie Pingree (D – ME) has introduced legislation to mandate that survivors of military sexual violence get the same service-connected disability compensation for their mental health conditions and physical injuries that combat veterans are currently awarded for wounds of war.  H.R. 930 is the first public step our policymakers have taken in recognizing the gross double standard that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) forces upon veterans who survive military sexual violence.

We applaud Representative Pingree’s leadership and urge her fellow legislators to embrace legislation that finally forces the VA to stop blaming the women and men of our armed forces for the brutal assaults and harassment that are perpetrated upon them, and to instead give them the health care, benefits, and justice they so rightly deserve.

Today, has chosen to feature SWAN’s petition to end Military Sexual Violence among 18 petitions that are changing how the world responds to social justice issues of the day. Please let your friends and colleagues know that they can help our military personnel by signing this petition.

We thank you for your continued support and join you in honoring all women who have made this planet a safer and more equitable world for all.

Yours in service,
Anu Bhagwati
Executive Director, Service Women’s Action Network

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