PoliticalNews.me - Dec 25,2013 - Defense Bill Includes Ayotte Legislation to Combat Military Sexual Assault, Provide Support to Victims
Legislation also includes Ayotte measures to strengthen Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Pease
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Senate approved the Fiscal Year 2014 defense authorization bill, which includes several proposals authored or cosponsored by U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) - including historic measures aimed at combating sexual assault in the military. The final bill contains dozens of major reforms to address sexual assault in the military, including a key provision authored by Senator Ayotte and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) that would provide sexual assault victims in all military branches with a Special Victims' Counsel - a trained military lawyer to guide the victim throughout the legal process. The bill also includes provisions Senator Ayotte fought for that will strengthen Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Pease Air National Guard Base, and support military families.
"This bipartisan legislation includes major reforms to better protect and support victims of sexual assault in our military, boost prosecutions, and hold military commanders accountable - including a provision I authored with Senator Murray to provide sexual assault victims in all branches with their own military lawyer," said Ayotte, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. "I'm also pleased that the final bill includes important priorities for Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Pease and strengthens our military readiness. In addition, this bill and Senate report include my provisions to ensure our service members and their families have better housing, to improve our efforts to find and bring home our fallen heroes, and to prevent Americans' tax dollars from falling into the hands of terrorists."
AYOTTE PROVISIONS INCLUDED IN THE FY 2014 NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT (NDAA):
Combating Military Sexual Assault
Ayotte, a former prosecutor and state attorney general, worked with Senator Murray and with Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) for much of the year on legislation to ensure that victims of sexual assault in the military receive the support they need, criminals are punished for their crimes, and commanders are held accountable for what happens in their units. The defense bill contains major reforms to protect and support victims of sexual assault, boost prosecutions, and hold military commanders accountable -- including a key provision authored by Ayotte and Murray that will provide sexual assault victims in all military branches with a Special Victims' Counsel, a trained military lawyer to guide the victim throughout the difficult legal process. The final bill also includes Ayotte-Murray language aimed at improving support for victims of sexual assault in the National Guard and Reserve.
Never Contract with the Enemy
The defense bill includes key provisions of the Ayotte-Blumenthal "Never Contract with the Enemy" legislation that would give federal contracting officials in all geographic combatant commands the tools they need to more easily terminate or void contracts that are directly or indirectly benefitting America's enemies. The Ayotte-Blumenthal bill expands and enhances successful legislation authored by Sen. Ayotte and former Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) that was included in the FY 2012 NDAA. The