“We have an epidemic here,” [Rep. Jane Harman] said. “Women serving in the U.S. military today are more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire in Iraq.”
That was 2008, yet little has changed.
Kori Cioca, 25, of Wilmington, Ohio, tells about how she was raped while serving in the U.S. Coast Guard.
Long story short, I was raped.
When I told my command they waited. They didn’t do anything to help me. It’s like they didn’t care. It wasn’t important. I wasn’t important.
The coast guard’s a lifesaving service yet they didn’t save mine.
Military doctors say that 40% of women at veterans’ hospitals report being sexually assaulted during their service.
[Rep. John] Tierney said, “what’s at stake here goes to the very core of the values of the military and the nation itself.
“When our sons and daughters put their lives on the line to defend the rest of us, the last thing they should fear is being attacked by one of our own.”
Will we kick the can down the road on this, as victims of sexual assault in our own military suffer in silence? Will we continue to hold hearings and listen to the military say it takes these issues seriously, while the evidence in these cases proves the opposite to be true. We must listen to these women’s stories. We must believe and trust them. And we must demand justice.
Please check out the Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN) for more information and ways to get involved.