On Wednesday, the U.S. Senate signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes reforms promoted by Vanessa Guillen’s disappearance and murder.
The video above is from an earlier story.
Houston US Representative Sylvia Garcia announced the news Wednesday on her Instagram, adding, “There’s a long way to go #JusticeForVanessaGuillen, but we keep fighting and now these reforms are coming @ @JusticeForVanessaGuillen. POTUS’.”
The NDAA urges special prosecutors to investigate allegations of sexual misconduct, not a chain of command of a soldier.
WATCH: Vanessa Guillen: Remember Her Name
The change is welcome news for the family of Guillen, an Army professional from Houston, and survivors of sexual trauma in the military. They have long said soldiers do not report abuse, out of fear of reprisals. Guillen’s family has long alleged that she was sexually harassed before being killed by another soldier while serving the country.
Garcia added that this would “ensure that what happened to Guillen never happens to another soldier.”
“It’s a bittersweet feeling,” said Guillen’s sister, Mayra, posted on Instagram. “The loss of my sister caused the biggest change in military law in history. I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time.”
The reforms are included in the $768 billion defense authorization bill that the Senate passed. The bill creates a special office to handle independent investigations and criminal prosecutions within the United States Armed Forces.
The bill also requires notification of survivors of their perpetrators’ results, and requires the Department of Defense to monitor allegations of retaliation.
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https://abc13.com/vanessa-guillen-senate-passes-ndaa-2021-status-vote/11344609/ Vanessa Guillen: US Senate signs into law the National Defense Authorization Act, the bill will be forwarded to Pres. Joe Biden’s desk