In the “U.S. Watch” column of the May 1, 2014, Wall Street Journal, in a brief article headlined “Veterans Groups Sue to Aid Sex-Assault Victims,” Ben Kesling writes:
Veterans groups filed suit in a federal court Wednesday to help sexual-assault victims more easily receive benefits for trauma suffered during military service.As many of you know, I often write about PTSD. And on my site www.insupportofourtroops.com I have included the documentary “The Invisible War” about rape in the U.S. military.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. Circuit Court in Washington, alleges the Department of Veterans Affairs hasn't acted on a petition to reduce victims' burden of proof of post-traumatic stress disorder caused by military sexual trauma in claims for benefits.
Kesling goes on to write:
"Post-traumatic stress is post-traumatic stress, it shouldn't matter the cause," said Anu Bhagwati, executive director of the Service Women's Action Network, one of the groups bringing the suit. The Vietnam Veterans of America also is a plaintiff in the legal action.In my PTSD short story SOLOMON'S JUSTICE a female vet realizes she is suffering from PTSD from the time she was raped as a teen when her father was in the military and two more times when she was on active military duty herself. (You can now read SOLOMON'S JUSTICE for free on Wattpad at http://budurl.com/SJWattpad)
Veterans generally must prove that a disability was the result of a particular service-related injury, such as being wounded in combat. Some diseases, however, are presumed to be service-connected and don't require such specific proof.
It will be interesting to see what happens with this lawsuit. And meanwhile, you might want to read my recent blog post “Reality and Fictional Topic of Sexual Assault in the Military.”
Phyllis Zimbler Miller is the author of the 2008 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award semifinalist MRS. LIEUTENANT and the co-author of the Navy thriller LT. COMMANDER MOLLIE SANDERS. Phyllis is the co-founder of the marketing consulting company Miller Mosaic LLC, which works with clients to attract more business. Read her book-related posts at www.PhyllisZimblerMiller.com