November 11th Vietnam Memorial (Wacker and Wabash) Chicago, IL
11AM Memorial and speak out by veterans of Afghanistan, Iraq, and the "Global War on terror" with a special focus on experiences of women service members and veterans.
12 NOON March to Occupy Chicago (Wacker and Wabash to LaSalle and Jackson)
... It should be incandescently clear that no one who has any concern for the integrity and life of America today can ignore the present war. ... (America) can never be saved so long as it destroys the deepest hopes of men the world over. So it is that those of us who are yet determined that America "will be" are led down the path of protest and dissent, working for the health of our land. - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Beyond Vietnam, 1967
We are Iraq Veterans Against the War.
We are service members and veterans.
We are determined that America Will Be.
We are the 99%.
We take heed of Dr. King's words as we stand for the health of our land and "protest and dissent" systemic economic exploitation and the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. As veterans and service members, in the ranks of the 99%, we are tasked to fight wars that profit only the 1%. Today, we stand with the Occupy Movement because it is our brothers and sisters in arms, our families, and our communities that suffer physically, mentally, and economically under the weight of two protracted wars that have crippled our communities, our healthcare systems, our military, our economy, and the communities of so many Afghans and Iraqis.
Furthermore, within this exploitative system, the experience of women service members is compounded by the rampant sexism within the military. 1 in 3 women report Military Sexual Trauma from sexual assault and/or harassment. Because of this, women have an increased likelihood of experiencing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Additionally, there is often little support for women service members who are parents. Moreover, women are subjected to gender discrimination and are scrutinized above and beyond their male counterparts.
Here in Chicago the Women's Clinic at the Jesse Brown VA continues to neglect the needs of the women veterans. And at Fort Hood, Texas, where the Operation Recovery Campaign's organizing team has been focusing its efforts, it has been reported that there is only one counselor who specializes in Military Sexual Trauma on a base of over 50,000 soldiers and their families.
This Veterans' Day, we are calling on the Jesse Brown VA and Fort Hood to support women's and all service members' right to heal.
Come out to help us demand:
1) A community dialogue about the failures at the Jesse Brown VA Women's Clinic in Chicago, IL
2) A public town hall meeting to address issues of untreated trauma at Fort Hood, TX
3) Improved access to mental health services on base at Fort Hood, TX
Help us send our message to Ft. Hood and the Jesse Brown VA by coming out on Veterans Day.
Stand with us for the health of our land and the lands of the Afghan and Iraqi people.