Petition to USCIS , Jeanne Shaheen, US State Department, Tim Kaine, John McCain, Elaine Duke, David Perdue, Kirsten Gillibrand, Jack Reed, Bill Nelson, Claire McCaskill, Richard Blumenthal, Joe Donnelly, Mazie Hirono, Angus King, Martin Heinrich, Elizabeth Warren, Gary Peters, Donald Trump, James Inhofe, Roger Wicker, Deb Fischer, Tom Cotton, Mike Rounds, Joni Ernst, Thom Tillis, Dan Sullivan, Ted Cruz, Lindsey Graham, Benjamin Sasse, Luther Strange, Jerry Brown, Tom McClintock, Kamala Harris, Dianne Feinstein, Charles Schumer, Jeff Denham, Mac Thornberry, Adam Smith, Walter Jones, Robert Brady, Joe Wilson, Susan Davis, Frank LoBiondo, James Lankford, James Langevin, Rob Bishop, Mike Lee, Rick Larsen, Michael Turner, Michelle Obama, Jim Cooper, Mike Rogers, Madeleine Bordallo, Trent Franks, Trey Gowdy, Joe Courtney, Bill Shuster, Niki Tsongas, Mike Conaway, John Garamendi, Doug Lamborn, Jackie Speier, Rob Wittman, Marc Veasey, Duncan Hunter, Tulsi Gabbard, Mike Coffman, Beto O'Rourke, Vicky Hartzler, Donald Norcross, Austin Scott, Ruben Gallego, Mo Brooks, Seth Moulton, Paul Cook, Colleen Hanabusa, Jim Bridenstine, Carol Shea-Porter, Brad Wenstrup, Jacky Rosen, Bradley Byrne, A. Donald McEachin, Sam Graves, Salud Carbajal, Elise Stefanik, Anthony Brown, Martha McSally, Stephanie Murphy, Steven Knight, Ro Khanna, Steve Russell, Tom O'Halleran, Scott DesJarlais, Thomas Suozzi, Ralph Abraham, Jimmy Panetta, Trent Kelly, Michael Gallagher, Matt Gaetz, Don Bacon, Jim Banks, Liz Cheney, Jamie Raskin, Ben Cardin, Chris Van Hollen, John Bird
Save Aysha and Her Family from Being Executed
Aysha's father Muhammad Kamran is a heroic interpreter who worked with the US military for 9 years in Afghanistan. His military supervisors praised his work ethic, dedication, and trustworthiness, and his incredible skill of fluently speaking six languages made him indispensable on Special Forces night raids on Taliban insurgents. He once saved an American soldier by dashing into an ambushed vehicle under Taliban fire. But the Taliban considers his faithful service to the US military a capital crime and is working hard to find and kill Muhammad and his wife and his four young daughters. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently denied Muhammad and his entire family for humanitarian parole because they don't care enough about Muslim refugees to even save a toddler from the Taliban. Tell the director of the Humanitarian Affairs Branch at USCIS, John Bird, to re-open and approve Muhammad and his family's humanitarian parole cases to save them from the Taliban before it is too late. When the US military mostly pulled out of Afghanistan in 2014, the Taliban gained strength in Afghanistan and killed many interpreters or their family members in revenge. One of Muhammad's brothers and a nephew, Sahil, who was also an interpreter, were shot and left for dead in an assassination attempt on Muhammad and his family. After the Taliban ambush, Muhammad fled his home district, just in time to escape a second Taliban attack that destroyed their family home. Consequently, Muhammad lost all contact with US military personnel who could have helped him apply for an SIV visa. He has been living in hiding for three years with his wife and four young daughters. They are living in daily fear of being discovered and killed by the Taliban and are unable to leave their house. There is no heating in the house, and leaks in the roof have made his young daughters sick on several occasions from getting infections from bacteria in the water or getting cold in the winter. When I learned about Muhammad and his family's plight a few months ago, I was determined to do everything possible to save their lives. Muhammad had tried to apply to the US as a refugee on his own, but he was denied for “discretionary security reasons,” a very common problem for former military interpreters and their families. When Muhammad's refugee case was denied, he was devastated and lost all hope for saving his life and his family's lives. He said the only option left for him was to surrender to the Taliban, thinking that after the Taliban tortured and killed him, they would stop looking for his children. I told him not to give up and promised him to find a way to save their lives. Please help me keep my promise to Muhammad to save his life and his family's lives. They do not deserve to suffer and die because of Muhammad's service to the US military. My family hired a lawyer and filed a humanitarian parole case to sponsor Muhammad and his family to come live in the US while he works to get permanent, legal status in the US. Our humanitarian parole case for them may be our last chance to save their lives. In what our lawyer says is the most egregious case she has ever seen, USCIS denied Muhammad and his family's humanitarian parole cases because his refugee case had been denied and without even bothering to figure out why the refugee case had been denied. Thus, they denied Muhammad's humanitarian parole case for “discretionary reasons” without even knowing what those discretionary reasons were. This is effectively a death sentence for the entire family. When our lawyer pleaded with USCIS to at least let Muhammad's young daughters come live with their aunt and uncle in the US, the director of the Humanitarian Affairs Branch of USCIS, John Bird, refused to approve any of the family's cases and made the absurd claim that the entire family, including Muhammad's 2- and 4-year-old daughters, are a threat to national security. Because of USCIS's policy and Muhammad's service to the US military, Muhammad's children were literally born with a death sentence. Mr. Bird acknowledges that Muhammad and his family meet all the criteria for humanitarian parole, and he does not question that they will be killed if left in their current situation. He just does not care enough about Muslim refugees to even save a toddler from the Taliban. Worse yet, two months ago USCIS granted humanitarian parole to family members of Las Zetas drug cartel members who murdered US ICE agents in Mexico, so that the family members of the murderers could attend a trial in Washington, D.C. Thus, USCIS is literally treating Muhammad and his family worse than criminals. http://www.nationalreview.com/article/453519/operation-fast-and-furious-victor-avila-betrayed-obama-administration Sign the petition to tell USCIS to re-open and approve Muhammad's and his family's cases quickly. Muhammad is a hero who faithfully served the US military for over 9 years and is now in grave danger because the Taliban is determined to get revenge. He has already lost everything except his and his family's lives because of his service to America, but he is still proud of his choice to work for the US military. All he wants in return is the chance to bring his daughters to safety and to give them a future. If USCIS does not re-open and approve his case, he will be left behind to be killed by the same terrorists that he risked his life to fight for so many years. The Sacramento Bee recently wrote a story about my family's efforts to help Muhammad and his family. http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article187680333.html No One Left Behind, the non-profit fighting to save Afghan and Iraqi interpreters, also recently published a blog post highlighting Muhammad's case http://nooneleft.org/2017/12/12/4221/ For more background information, The Ithaca Voice wrote a story about Muhammad and his career with the US military: https://ithacavoice.com/2017/06/former-afghan-interpreter-hopes-find-sanctuary-u-s-help-cornell-student/ Please call your Congressional representatives and ask them to tell USCIS to approve this case. If you need contact information on your Congressional representatives, use this link to look them up: https://whoismyrepresentative.com/ Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on Muhammad's case. Please also email me if you know Muhammad personally or if you know any government officials or reporters who may be able to help raise public awareness of Muhammad's case.
Petition to U.S. House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, Nancy Pelosi, President Donald J. Trump, Senator Mitch McConnell, Senator Chuck Schumer, Senator Bill Nelson, Congressman Joe Wilson
Stop denying earned survivor benefits to military surviving spouses
My husband was serving his 30th year in the Navy when the F-18 he was riding in crashed. He was killed, and in a moment, my family's life changed forever. While my children and I were devastated, and then we were saddened to discover that the Dept. of Defense and Congress was far less supportive. My husband’s earned survivor benefit insurance, the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP), a insurance annuity, was not paid to me in full. When he died, I was informed that I would only be getting a fraction of the benefit promised. When I asked why, it was explained to me that those spouses who also were eligible to receive Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) from the Veterans Administration will have their SBP survivor annuity insurance benefits offset dollar for dollar by DIC. Full SBP payment is unfairly denied to those surviving spouses. This is known as the SBP-DIC offset, and we must fight to end it. When I lost my husband, I lost 75% of our household income. Today, most SBP-DIC offset surviving spouses receive compensation of only $15,095 a year. These surviving spouses deserve better from their country. I’m calling on Congress to provide surviving spouses with 100% of the Survivor Benefit Plan promised. Our government is reneging on a voluntarily purchased insurance plan whose entire purpose is to ensure that surviving spouses are taken care of financially should the sponsor pre-decease her/him. When a servicemember makes the ultimate sacrifice, their family shouldn’t have to worry about how they will survive. As a Navy spouse, I was there for countless others who experienced loss. When I lost my husband, I realized how negligent the government bureaucracy is towards families who have paid the ultimate price. I want to be there for those families again. Hopefully, if we can gather enough petition support, the government will not ignore us. Please sign the petition to end SBP-DIC offset for military surviving spouses and ask Congress to pass HR 846, (Rep Joe Wilson, SC) and S 339, (Senators Nelson, FL and Collins, ME), the two bills to change the law and end this unjust offset.
Petition to Governor Rick Scott, Jeff Atwater, Pam Bondi
Improve Veterans benefits for Florida Retirement System
After 16 years of military service, 6 combat deployments, and various overseas training tours, I was blessed to have been hired by a local South Florida Fire Department. When my supervisors and senior firemen found out about my military career, they recommended that I work quickly to buy credit towards my pension. With a career change at 35 years of age, every action had no time to waste. Unfortunately when I contacted the Florida Retirement advisors, they recommended against this because my years in the military were considered low risk. At present time, members of the Florida Retirement System are able to buy back 5 years of military service towards credit to their retirement plan. This is at a low risk rate class, and cannot be upgraded to a high risk class that many in law enforcement, fire rescue, and other high risk careers are currently earning. There is no available option to recognize the years of combat service as high risk. The fire service, police departments, highway patrol, and various state and local government offices actively recruit current and former military members. Take a moment to imagine the thousands of veterans that have endured mortar attacks, hostile fire, austere deployments that now work for your local communities. The Florida Retirement System and it's administration is classifying this service low risk and gives no opportunities for these members to recognize the high risk nature of the military. We are looking for the option to be able to upgrade from the standard rate to high risk. Please contact and petition Gov. Rick Scott, CFO Jeff Atwater, and A.G. Pam Bondi to allow military veterans working in a high risk career to be able to buy credit towards their time at a high risk rate.
Petition to President of the United States, Democratic National Committee, Republican National Committee, Bernie Sanders, Marco Rubio, Dianne Feinstein, John McCain, Kirsten Gillibrand, Rand Paul, Bill Nelson, Dick Durbin, Ted Cruz, Elizabeth Warren, Mitch McConnell, Charles Schumer, Cory Booker, Patty Murray, Al Franken, John Cornyn, Tim Kaine, Sherrod Brown, Robert Menendez, Lindsey Graham, Amy Klobuchar, Richard Blumenthal, Robert Casey, Richard Burr, Claire McCaskill, Lamar Alexander, Ron Wyden, Mark Warner, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, Department of Justice, Department of Defense, Paul Ryan, Nancy Pelosi, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Barack Obama, Donald Trump
Allow Transgender People Into the U.S. Military
On Wednesday, July 26, 2017, Donald Trump announced that transgender individuals would no longer be accepted or allowed into the U.S. Military because their cost is a "burden." This is extremely disgraceful and an insult to all those who have already given their lives for this country. This is not equality, and this is not "supporting the LGBT community," as he said he does. This is utterly transphobic. Many people who served are going to be left jobless, and many others will no longer be able to fulfill their dreams. This is not okay, and this should not be legal. Trans people are still people.
Petition to Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Justice, Illinois State Senate, Missouri State Senate, Tammy Duckworth, Mike Bost, Eric Greitens, Claire McCaskill, lea gabrielle
WOMEN VETERANS-YOUR VOICE FOR CHANGE
Fighting military rape culture
We are women. We are strong. We are troops, soldiers and shipmates. We serve this country. We fight for others, but who fights for us? I am fighting back not only on my behalf, but for those that feel like they can't. I am here to tell you that your voice matters. Your fight matters and together we can challenge and be the change we want to see. BACKSTORY: On October 11, 2017, former shipmates notified me that I was on a public page called "Shit my LPO says". There I found myself once again amidst a sexual harassment battle by my own "brother and sisters in arms", but instead of using their arms to protect me they used them to drown me. A uniform photo of me was stolen, altered with a pornography logo and posted on a their Facebook page of over 120k followers comprised of mostly active duty and veterans. The thousands of comments that ensued after celebrated the sexual violence of me. Although, there were 2 male Marines in the photo, I was the only one attacked because I was a women. Through this nightmare I was told to just "take it" because as a female in the military this is what I signed up for. And that I deserve this harassment because I have nice photos and because I didn't "ask properly" to have them removed, that I asked for it. Another comment stated that I was lucky to be out because I would have "fell off the ship" in the middle of the night. Are these the stories of some sailors who fall overboard? MY GOD! It's hard not to feel that this was another personal attack because while active duty, I was subject to harassment, but when I spoke up I was retaliated against and my command swept it under the rug (along with other issues). And now 2 years later, I seem to find myself being sexually harassed again and this time it is being accompanied by cyber bullying via social media on a large platform. The day after NCIS launched an investigation and my story was published online at Navy times , which only amplified the harassment. They attacked me on that page, the MCPON page (Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy) and on a fellow Facebook page with over 150k followers. The few who stood up for me were attacked too. The cyber criminals even found a way to profit from my harassment by selling T-shirts. All while thanking the Navy times for bringing them attention, thus generating their revenue. As a small business owner, I had to un-publish and detach my pages because they were under fire after they posted my information publicly. Their harassment expanded to over 12 Facebook posts, Instagram, Twitter and their external website. The FBI is aware as well as my state Congressman and between him and direct resources at Facebook headquarters, I was able to get the page shut down. The original page was reported numerous times and yet Facebook did nothing. It shouldn't take Facebook HQ and a Congressman to shut down sexual harassment/threats and cyber bullying.The offenders have since created another page referencing my harassment, as well as a third back-up page. I don't want anyone to ever feel as helpless as I felt that first day. Let alone feel they can't fight back because they aren't rich enough or well connected enough. What happens to Jane Doe in a small town that gets harassed? Does she just suffer until she feels suicide is her only way out? We are #notinvisible EXPOSING THE UNDERLYING ISSUE: This behavior is revolting and dishonorable. My story has helped to expose once again a very prevalent issue women service members face daily. Sadly, many choose the bystander route because it's easier or they choose not to fight because it doesn't directly affect them. Yes, we chose to serve our country, but we certainly didn't sign up to be continuously subjected to sexual harassment, assaults and rape by OUR OWN "comrades". And if we are targeted, why is our Chain of Command failing to protect us? Why are we attacked and humiliated when we choose to speak up? Why can't there be outside reporting, other than the Chain of Command? Why do offenders remain hidden? Why are many transferred, not punished? Why don't military offenders have a criminal record that follows them for doing criminal actions? Many women do not speak up because of all the barriers, whether it be stigma, ridicule or people along the journey who really could care less. JUST TAKE IT BECAUSE I HAD TOO....Another surprise to me, were the women who joined in to fuel the fire along with the men. They believed that if they had to go through it, then I should too, that getting harassed and "taking it" is a sign of toughness, a rite of passage and the hazing is merely a standard that happens in the military. This disturbed me even more, to know that instead of helping to extinguish the flames, they added to it because they were, at one point, subjected themselves. The VA has had an increase in PTSD of women veterans along with higher suicide rates. It's 2017 and the number of women will continue to rise as we serve alongside our male counterparts. The military training of sexual harassment, assault and rape does nothing when the culture and chain of command is toxic. Let alone when matters such as this are taken lightly. The active duty members who added to my defamation of character are punishable under the UCMJ: Uniform Code of Military Justice and the Veterans saying to "suck their DD-214" can be punished under Civil Law, yet it's still a laughing matter? So why aren't these training sessions working? Is it the delivery? Are the commands still sweeping issues under the rug? Are the recruiters caring to much about quantity and not quality? Or is it because punishment is too much extra work? I have witnessed first hand the laughter that ensues while this serious training is being conducted. The fact that we need to repeatedly tell adults to NOT harass others and NO means NO is alarming, but to repeatedly remind our MILITARY MEMBERS is a shame in itself. These are supposed to be our representatives for the United States and yet they encouraged and celebrated the sexual violence of not only me, but many other women service members and veterans. Most people hold the military to a higher standard, but this disgusting behavior degrades those who actually serve by the core values of HONOR, COURAGE and COMMITMENT. I honestly think that if my harassment/physical interactions were properly handled in accordance with the standards they preach and punished back then. I wouldn't be dealing with this 2 years later on a public scale. If situations like this were taken seriously, shut down and punished immediately. I believe harassment, abuse, assaults and rapes would decrease because the precursor would be directly addressed. When will harassment, cyber bullying, rape and assaults stop? Or even be recognized to it's fullest extent? When will women veteran voices be heard? We are told to be a soldier, stand strong and fight for freedom. Yet, we are prisoners in a cage of helplessness when we choose to fight back. We fight for others...... Now.......Who will fight for us? What I’d like to accomplish/possible solutions: Update/tighten cyber bullying, defamation of character, harassment & stalking laws (List of state laws) Demand more accountability on social media platforms & a stronger verifying method for account users (Goes for new created media platforms/apps i.e. requirement) Implement or add a more direct emergency line for media platforms (reporting is failing/ offer more options than hide or block content, but actually addressing it directly) Increase punishment & consequences for cyber criminals and offenders (maybe they'll think twice) Be a voice for women, especially women service members (just because you aren’t well connected or wealthy shouldn’t be a factor when you are ready fight back) Lower the suicide rate for cyber related incidents (Cyber related suicides) No more #metoo's (Sexual Assault Reports in U.S. Military Reach Record High)
Petition to John Lewis, Hank Johnson, David Scott
Raise mental health awareness in the military and for veterans
Studies show that mental illness among military personnel are at an all time high . More military personnel suffer from a mental illness more than civilian . Overtime these mental illness leads to suicide . The on going battle of fighting mental illness in the military is at its peak . However what is it really accomplishing with just slide shows and mandatory classes given ? I suffer with depression and anxiety. Although the military is all about taking care of soldiers mentally , spiritually and physically I find that since I’ve become open about my mental illness I have become stained . I’m fighting to end this and bring real awareness and health to our military . So we can truly lower suicide rates even after time is served
Petition to Donald Trump, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell
Guarantee Military, Emergency First Responders get paid before Congress!
We need to include in Article 1 section 6 of the Constitution, “The Senators, Representatives, Military, Emergency Services and Homeland Security shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States.” To avoid holding our military and emergency services hostage in the event of a government shut down. For years, our honorable military emergency services and Homeland Security have been held hostage as a negotiating tool or bargaining chip to thwart the passing of a bill or financial resolution. This should never happen! Our Military, Emergency Services workers and Homeland Security risk their lives everyday. Let's ensure this becomes a Constitutional Law and we never let what is happening now in the house happen ever again! Sign this petition and please share.
Petition to U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, Paul Ryan, Johnny Isakson, Orrin Hatch, VA Secretary Dr. David Shulkin, President of the United States, Philip Roe, Elizabeth Esty, Mike Yates
Give the Vietnam Blue Water Navy Veterans their presumptive rights.
In 1977, the first claims of Agent Orange exposure came flooding into the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). But it took 14 years for Congress to actually listen, take action and give our Vietnam veterans the benefits they deserved. The Agent Orange Act of 1991 was implemented to provide much-needed care to veterans who were exposed to the harmful chemical cocktail Agent Orange. Many of us thought the fight to get the medical attention we deserved was over, but that wasn’t the case. In 2002, the VA amended its initial plan and excluded thousands of “Blue Water” Navy vets -- vets who served right off the coast -- from receiving our rightful benefits. Because we hadn’t served on land, the VA tried to say we were unlikely to suffer the effects of Agent Orange poisoning. Even though we didn’t serve on Vietnamese soil, we were still exposed to Agent Orange. In fact, a 2011 study by the National Institute of Medicine found that Blue Water veterans could have been exposed in multiple ways, including via the ships’ water distillation system and through the air. The National Institute of Medicine also stated, “Given the available evidence, the committee recommends that members of the Blue Water Navy should not be excluded from the set of Vietnam-era veterans with presumed herbicide exposure.” We are asking for your help in urging Congress to pass legislation (House Bill H 299 and Senate Bill S 422) that will reinstate our right as Vietnam Navy veterans to receive the benefits we deserve for being exposed to this terrible chemical. Nearly 90,000 Blue Water vets are depending on you. We are dealing with serious health issues that range from cancer to diabetes, and from Parkinson’s to heart disease. Many of these diseases have made it nearly impossible for some of us to get steady work. Last year, the VA finally extended benefits to Air Force crew members who flew in C-123s after they had been used in Vietnam to spray the toxic cocktail. The VA came to the realization that even the slightest exposure to this chemical had serious effects on a soldier's health. So why are the Navy vets’ pleas being ignored? We breathed the Agent Orange-polluted air that drifted from the coast and drank water sprinkled with the herbicide, and now our bodies are paying the cost. We ask you to stand with us, and with Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Rep. David Valadao, and demand that the VA assume responsibility for the effects of Agent Orange on Blue Water vets. Please sign our petition asking Congress to pass House Bill HR 299 and Senate Bill S 422 and give us our benefits.