Murkowski Working to Extend Sexual Assault Protections to Coast Guard

Senator Co-Sponsors Coast Guard STRONG Act to Even USCG, DoD Protections

WASHINGTON, DC — After co-sponsoring two separate bills to crack down on military sexual assaults and enhance the protections allowed to victims, Senator Lisa Murkowski is co-sponsoring bipartisan legislation to help the men and women who wear the United States Coast Guard uniform: The Coast Guard STRONG Act. Presently, USCG members have been exempt from provisions under the National Defense Authorization Act that offer victims certain legal rights, since they serve within the Department of Homeland Security, not the Department of Defense.

“Alaska has a close relationship with the United States Coast Guard, we look out for those who watch our waters closely,” said Senator Murkowski.  “We believe they deserve every protection from sexual violence amidst the ranks, and that there should not be any benefit or service gained by a member of the armed forces that is not offered to our guardians.”

The Coast Guard STRONG Act would allow U.S. Coast Guard members who file unrestricted reports of sexual assault an expedited consideration of a request for transfer from the location of their alleged assailant.  In 2011, the STRONG Act extended this protection to military service members serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.  Other co-sponsors of the Coast Guard STRONG Act include Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Claire McCaskill (D-MO).