Monday, June 21, 2010

Help Defend the Women Who Defend Us

The American Civil Liberty Union (ACLU) is encouraging people to send emails to their congress person in order to ensure that women in the military have access to safe abortions while serving in the military.

The letter the ACLU is asking individuals to sign states:

At a time when our country is engaged in wars on two fronts, more women than ever before have answered the call to serve in the United States Armed Forces. Thus, it is deeply troubling that military women are being denied access to safe, legal abortion, except in very limited circumstances, when they serve abroad. Since 1988, servicewomen and military wives and daughters have been prevented from using their own, private dollars to pay for abortion care on military bases and it is time to right this terrible injustice.

This ban compromises the health and safety of American servicewomen, and its impact is particularly devastating for service members, spouses, and dependents stationed overseas. These women frequently lack access to safe abortion care for a number of reasons, including inadequate local health facilities, lack of trained medical personnel, or because they are stationed in remote or hostile areas. Additionally, servicewomen who are forced by the ban to seek medical care at civilian facilities must request a leave of military duty, which can only be granted after they disclose their private medical decisions to their superiors. Finally, I am well aware of the high incidence of rape and sexual assault in the military -- Congress should not further victimize a military woman by denying her access to the full range of reproductive health care services when she is in need.

Fortunately, the Senate Armed Services Committee has adopted an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would repeal the ban on using private funds to obtain abortions on military bases overseas. As your constituent, I urge you to support the repeal as the bill moves towards final passage.

In a previous post,, we saw how often rape happens in the military and how scary it can be to report.

There is the option to personalize the letter to add whatever you would like.

Please speak out to protect women in the armed forces by filling out the letter at this site .

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