Note from Amy: This email was from the filmmakers who made “The Invisible War,” a groundbreaking film that dives into the difficult issue of military sexual assault. I’m on their email list as someone who cares about the issue and because they interviewed me as a journalist for the film. I hope you take their plea to heart and tune in to watch this very worthy documentary:
Tonight, our award-winning investigative documentary – the film that sparked this movement to expose the epidemic of rape within the military – premieres nationally on PBS.
You’ve been with us through this long fight, and tonight is a moment we can all share as a community. But not everyone knows the importance of this issue. In addition to tuning in, will you help spread our message once more and find a friend to watch with? CLICK HERE to get details and find your local TV listing.
Having THE INVISIBLE WAR broadcast on national television, providing public access to stories like Trina and Kori’s, couldn’t come at a more critical time.
As you may have heard, last week, the Department of Defense released the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO) annual report, and it showed a significant spike in assaults – an increase of 35% over the last year. Over 26,000 service members were sexually assaulted in 2012 alone. Moreover, the report came out two days after an Air Force officer in charge of sexual assault prevention was himself arrested for sexual battery. It’s clear as ever: the military does not understand the plague within its ranks.
One of our champions in Congress, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said it best:
“If the man in charge for the Air Force – in preventing sexual assault – is being alleged to have committed a sexual assault this weekend, obviously there’s a failing in training and understanding of what sexual assault is and how corrosive and damaging it is to good order and discipline.”
Military sexual assault isn’t just making headlines on Capitol Hill. Over the past week, President Obama also spoke out, saying that he has “no tolerance” for sexual assault. Adding, “they’ve got to be held accountable – prosecuted, stripped of their positions, court-martialed, fired, dishonorably discharged, period.”
For those 26,000 servicemen and women who survived assault last year, and the thousands more survivors, the news is promising but the fight is far from over. We must keep up the momentum and continue to take action until change is realized and “Zero Tolerance” becomes “Zero Occurrence.”
Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering