H.R. 1928 (112th): Women’s Fair and Equal Right to Military Service Act

112th Congress, 2011–2013. Text as of May 13, 2011 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

I

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1928

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 13, 2011

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Armed Services

A BILL

To amend title 10, United States Code, to repeal the ground combat exclusion policy for female members of the Armed Forces.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Women’s Fair and Equal Right to Military Service Act.

2.

Findings and purpose

(a)

Findings

Congress finds the following:

(1)

260,457 female members of the Armed Forces have served in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, or Operation New Dawn.

(2)

25,099 female members of the Armed Forces are currently serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.

(3)

Women serving in Iraq and Afghanistan are not excluded from providing support to combat units or other frontline units.

(4)

As of April 1, 2011, 137 female members of the Armed Forces have been killed in Iraq or Afghanistan, and, of the women killed, over 60 were killed in combat.

(5)

More than 1,300 female members of the Armed Forces have been wounded in action, of which 758 were wounded in hostile action.

(6)

The current nature of war has changed in Iraq and Afghanistan and, despite the prohibition on female members of the Armed Forces serving in combat, so has the role of female members of the Armed Forces.

(7)

Women are increasingly attached to combat units and engaging in frontline roles despite the current ground combat exclusion policy.

(8)

Female members of the Armed Forces are engaging in direct combat without receiving adequate combat training due to the current ground combat exclusion policy described in current section 652 of title 10, United States Code.

(9)

The Secretaries of the military departments should be given the authorization to assign an eligible member of an armed force under the jurisdiction of that Secretary to a unit of that armed force based on the needs of the unit, regardless of the member’s gender.

(10)

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has stated that women have been serving in combat already and female members of the Armed Services have expressed that because they’re not in a combat military occupational specialty, they haven’t had combat training, but they’re on a combat patrol.

(b)

Purpose

The purposes of this Act are—

(1)

to ensure that modern military combat policies reflect the current operational environment of the combat operations; and

(2)

to raise the profile of the recognition that female members of the Armed Forces should receive for their service, particularly when it involves their contribution with regard to direct combat operations.

3.

Repeal of ground combat exclusion policy for female members of the Armed Forces

(a)

Repeal

(1)

Repeal

Section 652 of title 10, United States Code, is repealed.

(2)

Clerical amendment

The table of sections at the beginning of chapter 37 of such title is amended by striking the item relating to section 652.

(b)

Revision of current military personnel policies

(1)

Revision

The Secretary of Defense shall revise the military personnel policies of the Department of Defense and the military departments so that such policies do not restrict members of the Armed Forces from assignment to units and positions based on gender.

(2)

Notice and wait

Any change in a military personnel policy that would exclude based on gender shall not take effect until—

(A)

the Secretary of Defense submits to the Committees on Armed Services of the Senate and House of Representatives a notice of the intent to make the change; and

(B)

a period of 30 legislative days has expired following the date on which the notice is received by the committees.

(3)

Legislative day defined

In this subsection, term legislative day means a day on which either House of Congress is in session.