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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Women in Combat: Policy and Reality Don't Match

Women in Combat: Policy and Reality Don’t Match

Guest Post to One Weary Soldier By Francesca Acocella and Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women’s Rights Project

Servicewomen are currently flying helicopters, blowing up landmines, and serving on combat footpatrols. Yet official policy still purports to ban commanders from assigning servicewomen to serve in ground combat units.

Recent changes to the combat exclusion policy open up opportunities for women and recognize that many women have already been exposed to combat – and even lost their lives – in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Yet women are still officially barred from being assigned to ground combat units in most situations. Talented servicewomen who joined the Armed Services to contribute to our nation end up leaving because the policy prevents them from making the full contribution they are capable of making.  For decades, the American Civil Liberties Union Women’s Rights Project has worked with servicewomen to expand their opportunities for service, arguing that women’s exclusion from combat arms units is based on antiquated stereotypes about women and about war. Now, we're interested in talking with servicewomen who have been in combat, or who would like to serve in a combat arms unit or attend a combat arms school or training program. Please share your story with us.

The women defending our freedom deserve more than recognition for their contributions - they deserve the same career opportunities as servicemen. If you are a servicewoman who has been exposed to combat or wants to serve in a combat arms unit or attend a combat arms school or training program, please tell us your story. We look forward to hearing from you!

To get in touch with the ACLU Women’s Rights Project to share your story, please call 212-519-7858. All information will be treated as confidential. This is not a solicitation or an offer by the ACLU to represent you. We cannot promise that any information you provide will lead to any specific action on our part.

***Please note that this is a guest post to One Weary Soldier.  Do not contact me directly about this story.  I have no information for you.  Please see the above paragraph for contact information.  Thank you.

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