Battling the Storm Within

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Military sexual assault: New calls to reform system that allows DOD to police itself

WASHINGTON (SBG) — When the Biden Administration took over, there were immediate calls to address what many say is an alarming systemic issue: sexual assault in the military. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin took action shortly after confirmation, writing in a memo, "we must do more" when it comes to the issue of sexual assault. President Biden has also ordered a commission to review procedures in place and seek ways to improve them. As we await the results of new investigations, advocates, lawmakers and survivors are pushing for change now, saying this is the moment to reform a system that fails to deliver justice.


Lack of transparency around sexual assault in the National Guard makes it hard to see if real change is happening

Sexual assault reports in the National Guard increased by 30% from 2019 to 2020, Wisconsin National Guard top commander Paul Knapp said in a Wisconsin Public Radio segment Thursday.

Knapp, Wisconsin major general, attributed this increase to an influx of Guard members who are more comfortable coming forward.

In a separate WPR segment, Katelyn Ferral, a Capital Times reporter and former O’Brien Fellow in Public Service Journalism, said this claim is “at odds” with what survivors said in her investigation of the Guard.


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