Requires veteran organizations to provide assistance to veterans which adequately addresses military sexual trauma experienced by veterans due to their military service.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to developing plans to adequately address military sexual trauma
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To require the Division of Veterans' Affairs to develop programs to address military sexual trauma. The bill also requires the county and city veterans' service agencies to provide information on matters pertaining to military sexual trauma.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 To require the New York State Division of Veterans' Affairs to develop and encourage plans for assistance and benefits to address the military sexual trauma experienced by veterans due to their military service.
Section 2 Requires county and city veterans service agencies to have information on matters pertaining to military sexual trauma.
Section 3. Effective date
Military sexual trauma (MST) is the term that the Department of Veterans Affairs uses to refer to sexual assault or repeated, threatening sexual harassment that occurred while the Veteran was in the military. It includes any sexual activity where someone is involved against his or her will. He or she may have been pressured into sexual activities, may have been unable to consent to sexual activities, or may have been physically forced into sexual activities. Other experiences that fall into the category of MST include unwanted sexual touching or grabbing; threatening, offensive remarks about a person's body or sexual activities; and/or threatening or unwelcome sexual advances.
Both men and women can experience MST during their service. More than 3,150 military sexual assaults were reported in 2010 according to Department Of Defense statistics. However, Pentagon officials estimate that less than fourteen percent of sexual crimes against military personnel are reported. In 2010, the Department of Veterans Affairs medical staff treated more than 68,000 veterans who reported some sexual trauma during their military service.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2012: Delivered to Senate 2013: Died in Senate
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:
The creation of this program could be developed with the existing funds that operate the Division of Veterans' Affairs at this time.
This act shall take effect on the one hundred twentieth day after it shall have become a law; provided that any rules and regulations necessary for the timely implementation of this act on its effective date shall be promulgate on or before such date.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6381 IN SENATE January 21, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. TKACZYK -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Veterans, Homeland Securi- ty and Military Affairs AN ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to developing plans to adequately address military sexual trauma THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 353 of the executive law is amended by adding a new subdivision 22 to read as follows: 22. TO DEVELOP AND ENCOURAGE PLANS FOR ASSISTANCE AND BENEFITS FOR VETERANS WHO EXPERIENCE MILITARY SEXUAL TRAUMA WHILE ON ACTIVE DUTY OR DURING MILITARY TRAINING. S 2. Subdivision 1 of section 358 of the executive law, as amended by chapter 106 of the laws of 2003, is amended to read as follows: 1. A local veterans' service agency shall have power under the direc- tion of the state veterans' service agency, and it shall be its duty to inform military and naval authorities of the United States and assist members of the armed forces and veterans, who are residents of this state, and their families, in relation to (1) matters pertaining to educational training and retraining services and facilities, (2) health, medical and rehabilitation services and facilities, (3) provisions of federal, state and local laws and regulations affording special rights and privileges to members of the armed forces and war veterans and their families, (4) employment and re-employment services,
[and](5) MATTERS PERTAINING TO MILITARY SEXUAL TRAUMA EXPERIENCED WHILE ON ACTIVE DUTY OR DURING MILITARY TRAINING, AND (6) other matters of similar, related or appropriate nature. The local veterans' service agency may also assist families of members of the reserve components of the armed forces and the organized militia ordered into active duty to ensure that they are made aware of and are receiving all appropriate support available to them and are placed in contact with the agencies responsible for such support, including, but not limited to, the division of military and naval affairs and other state agencies responsible for providing suchEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD08821-02-4 S. 6381 2
support. The local veterans' service agency also shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the state director. S 3. This act shall take effect on the one hundred twentieth day after it shall have become a law; provided, that any rules and regulations necessary for the timely implementation of this act on its effective date shall be promulgated on or before such date.