Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Claire McCaskill Helps Military Sexual Trauma Victim Cut Through Red Tape

Claire McCaskill posted the story of a veteran, Terri Odom, who her office helped cut through red tape to get her benefits. Terri had been wrangling with the Department of Veterans Affairs to get needed medical procedures approved. When she contacted Claire's office four years ago, the roadblocks disappeared the same day, allowing her to get the treatment she needed.

Terri had many of her teeth knocked out thanks to military sexual trauma (MST). MST may include any sexual activity performed against one's will, either through physical force, threats of negative consequences, implied promotion, promises of favored treatment, or sex without consent due to intoxication etc. Other events that may be categorized as MST may include: unwanted sexual contact, threatening, offensive remarks and unwelcome sexual advances.

The post notes:
In the Senate, Claire worked to fix this problem so that victims get the support they need on base and off. Claire was able to work with the military to increase access to counseling services for victims of MST, strengthened the military's system of Sexual Assault Response Coordinators and Victim Advocates, and made it easier for victims to seek justice in court.
For Terri's complete story, visit the link here.

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