Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1960, the bipartisan FY 2014 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), to take care of our troops and their families, improve military readiness for future threats, and control costs during a time of declining resources. Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins (KS-02) released the following statement about the military sexual assault provision in the bill:
"This week the House took a positive step forward to help put an end to the occurrence of military sexual assault, and better protect these victims in this year's National Defense Authorization Act. Although the provisions the House included in the NDAA are a welcome first step, I believe more can be done to bring justice for these victims by allowing them to feel safe and protected when reporting the crime. I believe the only way to ensure "good order and discipline" and justice for every victim is to get at the heart of the problem, and take prosecution of these crimes out of the military chain-of-command. This is why I supported another bipartisan amendment introduced by Congressman Benishek, a Republican from Michigan, which mirrors legislation Senator Gillibrand, a Democrat from New York, introduced in the Senate. Although the Benishek amendment failed to be included this time around, I will continue to push for it, because the current approach is not working. It is not worthy of the brave men and women who volunteer to serve in our nation's armed forces, and we can do better."