Women who have served in the U.S. military are often referred to as “invisible veterans” because their service contributions, up until the 1970s, went largely unrecognized by politicians, the media, academia, and the general public. Women’s participation in the U.S. Armed Forces demonstrates the persistence of generations of women who fought against a traditionally male-dominated institution. It has also paved the way for today’s military women who have the privilege of serving their country, not as women, but as Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen.
Today’s women veterans — our mothers, sisters, daughters, and nieces who served in uniform — make up approximately 10% of the veteran population. While AMVETS, the most inclusive Congressionally chartered veteran service organization in the country, has always considered meeting the needs of women veterans a priority, these needs remain largely unmet by systems that haven’t evolved fast enough to keep pace with their needs.
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The “Respect Our SHEROES and their Experiences” (ROSE) Act of 2019
AMVETS believes a bill that addresses the entire women veterans experience as it relates to both domestic violence and military sexual trauma, rather than deal with them as single issues, is the most effective way to proceed and should be introduced in the Senate and House this session. The Military Justice Improvement and Violence Against Women Veterans Acts, both of which were introduced during the last session of concern, offer the best path forward in addressing the issues discussed.
Every month, we spotlight a female veteran who is active in her local community. If you would like to nominate a deserving vet, email your suggestions to media -at- amvets -dot- org, with the subject line “SHEROES in the field.” This month, we spotlight our own Cherissa Jackson, Chief Medical Executive for AMVETS, and her MilitaryTimes op ed, “Turn scars into tattoos that tell a story.”
Meet the very first winner of the AMVETS Silver Helmet Humanitarian Award: Corinne “Lindy” Boggs. She was the first woman elected to Congress from Louisiana, and known as an outspoken advocate for equal rights. She also served as ambassador to the Vatican and was a mother to three, including NPR, ABC, and former NewsHour congressional correspondent, Cokie Roberts.
Please check back for upcoming focus group dates or events in the community that AMVETS will be attending.