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Frankel Provisions Advancing Women Included in National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022

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Washington, September 23, 2021 | comments

West Palm Beach, FL – Today, Congresswoman Lois Frankel (FL-21) voted to pass the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2022, a strong, bipartisan bill that strengthens America’s national security, upholds our values, supports our servicemembers and their families, and advances our leadership around the world.

Importantly, the bill includes key Frankel provisions to advance women’s participation in national security forces at home and abroad. Specifically, the bill includes language to create a pilot program to assess the barriers preventing women’s participation in national security forces of six partner countries. It also requires the Secretary of Defense to encourage admitting diverse individuals, including women, to each military service academy and to engage with elementary schools, secondary schools, postsecondary educational institutions, and nonprofits to support activities related to supporting women and peace around the world.

“When women are given the opportunity to lead and are at the table for decisions about peace, security, and the wellbeing of their communities, the world is a safer and more prosperous place,” said Rep. Frankel. “Increasing women’s participation in peace and security efforts is not only crucial to advancing gender equality around the world, but also critical to advancing a broader national security strategy that is inclusive, diverse, and reflective of our values. This bill brings us one step closer to achieving these important goals.”

In addition to the Frankel provisions on gender equity included in the NDAA, the bipartisan bill also included a number of critical defense priorities including:

Advances our national security: 

  • Establishes a bipartisan U.S-Israel Technology Working Group to increase collaboration between the United States and Israel on emerging technology in cyber, space, artificial intelligence, and energy, and;
  • Provides new tools to deter aggression from Russia and China and action against transnational threats.

Meeting our responsibility to our servicemembers and their families:

 

  • Provides a pay raise for members of the military;
  • Strengthens parental leave for caregiving servicemembers;
  • Expands access to child care for servicemembers;
  • Improves financial security of low-income military members and those with family members living with a disability;
  • Protects military communities from Per- and Polyfluorinated Substances (PFAS) chemicals, commonly known as ‘forever chemicals’,
  • Strengthens access to health care including mental health care and reproductive care, and;
  • Combats sexual assault and harassment in the military.

 

Brings our defense into the modern era: 

  • Increases defense-wide Research and Development by 32 percent;
  • Fixes aging defense infrastructure;
  • Invests $1 billion in new cybersecurity technology including over $1 billion for artificial intelligence efforts, and;
  • Invests in new partnerships with the private sector and academia, including Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s) and Minority-Serving Institutions.

Honors our values: 

  • Builds on Congress’s bipartisan action in passing Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) legislation to provide for the relocation of our Afghan allies and partners and requires the Secretary of Defense to continue to provide in-depth reports and briefings to Congress on the situation in Afghanistan.

The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 passed by a vote of 316-113. The bill now heads to the Senate for their approval. Full text of the legislation is available here.

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