Press Release

Gillibrand Statement On Mark Milley, Chairman Of Joint Chiefs Of Staff, Dropping Opposition To Removing Decisions About Prosecuting Sexual Assault Out Of The Chain Of Command

May 3, 2021

According to the Associated Press, Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff General Mark Milley said today that “he is dropping his opposition to a proposal to take decisions on sexual assault prosecution out of the hands of commanders.” Addressing this major news, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand issued the following statement:

“It is deeply significant that General Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has dropped his opposition to removing decisions about prosecuting sexual assault and other serious crimes from the chain of command. Milley’s new position is one more sign that long overdue change—which will provide justice for survivors— is coming to our military justice system.”

Last week, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen also reversed his position on the provisions contained in the Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act, introduced by Senator Gillibrand and a group of bipartisan senators last week. Mullen, who had previously opposed taking prosecution decisions from commanders, told Politico, “I’m at a point now where I am ready to support removal, which is a huge step for me because I recognize how serious that issue is.”