Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) participated in a House Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing: “Evaluating Federal and Community Efforts to Eliminate Veteran Homelessness.” During the hearing, Brownley focused on the links between female veterans’ homelessness and military sexual trauma (MST).
During testimony before the committee, John Downing, CEO of Soldier On, noted that in his experience 100 percent of the female veterans who are homeless have experienced MST. He also noted that of all homeless veterans, approximately 25 percent are considered chronically homeless, and may never become self-sufficient, requiring a lifetime of intensive care. Brownley used her time during the hearing to hone in on these statistics. A video of the exchange is available here.
As Ranking Member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health, Brownley has been particularly focused on issues facing female veterans, including MST. Earlier this year, Brownley offered a Motion to Instruct conferees on the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014, which led to the inclusion several provisions on MST in the final bill. Brownley has also urged Chairman Miller to hold a full committee hearing to focus more on issues facing female veterans.