FAIRFAX, Va., July 21, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Two former Army officers and current members of the Northern Virginia law firm of Jordan Patrick & Cooley LLP, urged President Obama via letter to consider their proposals to strengthen the Pentagon's anti-sexual assault plans. The two are Howard G. Cooley, a partner in the firm and retired Army colonel, and Daryle A. Jordan, the firm's managing partner and a former Army major who advised commanders during the Gulf War.
Cooley and Jordan summarize the culture of violence to which women are subjected in the military, the grim history and adverse ramifications of sexual assault regarding servicemembers, the possibility that over 300,000 female servicemembers might have been sexually assaulted since 1948, and the military's institutional failure to respond effectively at all levels, from the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Service Secretaries of the Army and Navy, and installations, including commanders. As a result of that massive structural failure, Cooley and Jordan argue women servicemembers require extraordinary lifelines from the President and Congress.
Cooley and Jordan regard their proposed seven-step remedies as vital foundations to combating sexual assault because they promote robust relief for women servicemembers that is beyond the control of the conventional command structure and thwarts efforts by commands to cutoff women servicemembers from access to powerful assistance.
Although omitted from the Pentagon's strategic plan to the President, the seven-step proposal includes an executive order establishing a comprehensive national anti-sexual assault policy; the creation of a worldwide anti-sexual assault command that advises commanding admirals and generals worldwide regarding the appropriate disposition of sexual assault and related allegations, and assumes jurisdiction over certain sexual assault cases; the appointment of the commander of the anti-sexual assault command as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and principal advisor to the President and Congress regarding sexual assault and women's issues; a DoD-level special and confidential board for correction of military records for sexual assault and related matters; greater access to federal court by military sexual assault victims; enhanced special security, on a 24/7 basis for each installation worldwide; and, heightened personnel evaluations for all military and civilian personnel involved in sexual assault dispositions at every level, from basic training to Service Secretariats.
SOURCE Jordan Patrick & Cooley LLP