- United States Department of DefenseSecretary of Defense Ash Carter
Let women serve in any military position they qualify for.
In 2013, the Department of Defense finally lifted the ban on women serving in combat. But this new policy also gave each branch of the military until January 1, 2016, to decide whether to request that women still be kept from serving in certain positions, even if they are physically and otherwise qualified.
When it comes to keeping America safe, every mission should be assigned to the best person for the job. That can’t happen if thousands of troops are prevented from some types of military service simply because of their gender.
As a female veteran who led troops in a combat zone in Afghanistan, I’m calling on the Secretary of Defense to make no exceptions, and let women serve in any military position for which they qualify.
I know women are completely capable of accomplishing missions in even the most hostile conditions -- because my Marines and I did it. As an officer in the United States Marine Corps, I and the 46 women who served under my command in Afghanistan conducted missions with all-male combat infantry units and lived with them in the same sparse, outpost conditions. We went out on patrols alongside our brothers-in-arms, sometimes twice a day, carrying the same heavy gear they carried. When difficult situations arose, we fought alongside our brothers; the enemy never stopped to ask us our gender. Through all the challenges a person faces in combat, being a woman had no effect on our ability to complete our mission.
But even though I and many more like me in every branch of the military have proven our ability to serve, some are still arguing that not all positions should be open to women, even if they meet every requirement and pass every test. These views aren’t just antiquated -- they threaten to hurt our ability to field the most effective fighting force we can.
Please sign my petition to tell the Secretary of Defense that, for the sake of our military readiness, he should let women serve in any military role for which they are qualified, with no exceptions.
To find out more visit www.noexceptions2016.com.
- Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
United States Department of Defense
Let women serve in any military position they qualify for. No Exceptions.
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