Washington, DC — The following is the statement of Marine Corps veteran and CEO of the Vet Voice Foundation, Janessa Goldbeck, on today’s announcement on protecting troops’ reproductive rights, by the Department of Defense:
“Today’s announcement is welcome attention on the new host of hurdles our service members face in light of the Dobbs decision. While specifics of any new directives are yet to be seen, the Pentagon’s commitment to addressing these issues is very encouraging.
“It is simply unacceptable that a service member stationed in one state has access to reproductive services that service members in other states do not. Nor is it right that the highly personal decision to end a pregnancy could be influenced by the personal or religious beliefs of a service member’s superiors or commanding officer. This new guidance is a critical step to ensure all service members have equal rights to privacy and access to reproductive health care.
“The continued efforts of the Biden administration to protect the right to choose, in the aftermath of Dobbs, has been heartening. We call on the Secretary of the VA to expand access to abortion to all veterans and CHAMPVA beneficiaries, and call on Congress to aid the president in his efforts. It is essential that we codify Roe v Wade into law so that we can restore the right to choose for all veterans and military families from coast-to-coast. Ultimately, that is the only way to fully guarantee that right.”