5April2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STATEMENT by #NotInMyMarineCorps On The Marine Corps Letter to Rep. Jackie Speier (CA-14) Dated April 3, 2017
Not in My Marine Corps is disappointed to learn that the Marine Corps will not be sending a representative to update the caucus at the Democratic Working Women’s Group during a hearing on April 5th, 2017 to address the ongoing issue of nonconsensual pornography within the United States Military. In their letter dated April 3, 2017 Brigadier General D.J. Furness provided several excuses for not availing a representative, and instead outlined the actions to date made by the Marine Corps in response to this matter. BGen Furness’ letter details a task force made up of 75 Marines, Navy, and civilian personnel but only compromises 35% female representation. This is an interesting statistic as this issue primarily impacts women in the services. This same letter cites studies, and papers for Marines and poolees to sign, commanders handbooks to read, white letter after white letter, future initiatives to study, but no concrete action. What we are seeing in this letter is a commitment to paper, not participation.
The absence of any Marine Corps leadership at this hearing speaks volumes. The response to this matter from the Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Robert Neller, to women has been “I know I’m asking a lot of you right now, but I ask you to trust the leadership of the Marine Corps to take action and correct this problem, I ask you to trust me personally as your commandant”. The glaring lack of Marine Corps leadership attending hearings on this issue begs the question, how can we?
16March2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STATEMENT by #NotInMyMarineCorps regarding support for Representative Jackie Speir (CA-14) bill to criminalize service members sharing intimate images without consent:
Not In My Marine Corps has been an advocate over the past ten days, since the “Marines United” photo-sharing scandal was brought to light, for the need of federal legislation and an amendment to the Uniform Code of Military Justice to address nonconsensual photo sharing. Such acts have been occurring, and are often encouraged, on sites like Marines United and Anon-IB which aims to widely distribute private images. . We believe that the bill introduced today by Representative Speier (Service members Intimate Privacy Protection Act (SIPPA)) is the first step in combating the issue of service members sharing imagery without the consent of the individual depicted. Additionally, we encourage a follow-up bill which would address any veteran involvement and behavior in such groups, as there are states that do not have laws which would address this type of nonconsensual photo sharing. A federal law would also cover states which have laws that are vague and contain grey areas that do not hold veterans and civilians accountable for actions like that of Marines United under their current laws.
We encourage bipartisan support for this bill which will help protect service members from conduct that has been pervasive for over a decade: on social media, in direct military units, and through various other means of sharing. The havoc caused by nonconsensual photo-sharing can hinder careers, tear apart families, and can cause psychological damage. Our service members deserve an amendment to the UCMJ and a federal law that would protect them from such predatory acts.
Not In My Marine Corps is a grassroots organization with a thousand members which include U.S. active duty service, veterans, family members, and civilians fighting to end sexual harassment and assault within the United States Military Services. We vow to create a space free from victim blaming and shaming, provide resources for survivors of assault and harassment to report, seek legal
Erin Kirk-Cuomo, Co-Founder, Veteran United States Marine Corps
Lisa Gleason, Co-Founder, Veteran United States Marine Corps
Jennifer Esparza, Co-Founder, Veteran United States Marine Corps
Sara [redacted], Co-Founder, Active Duty United States Coast Guard
11March2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STATEMENT by #NotInMyMarineCorps regarding the Department of Defense presentation on March 9, 2017 of Nominations in Committee (Non-Civilian) for confirmation:
Not In My Marine Corps requests that all votes on the Department of Defense non-civilian nominations, or general officers, be suspended until every submitted candidate is on the record pledging support to make the issues surrounding the Marines United and Anon-IB nonconsensual photo sharing a priority. These candidates must strongly state their commitment to thoroughly investigate, across military branches, the issues of nonconsensual photo sharing, harassment, assault, and online harassment by service members and veterans. We request their support for an amendment to the Uniform Code of Military Justice to specifically address nonconsensual photo sharing, online harassment, and rape culture language as recently revealed on sites like Marines United and Anon-IB.
Furthermore, we request that all future Marine Corps general officer candidates state their dedication to end gender segregation in Marine Corps basic training, as this practice lays the foundation for the actions and attitudes appearing on Marines United and similar sites.
As this is the first round of submissions that have been presented from the Department of Defense since this issue came to light, we request that this statement applies to all future submissions for Non-Civilian candidates under this session. We ask that active duty military personnel, veterans, and civilians contact their Senators and Representatives to voice their support for these actions. Please see below for links to contact your congressional representatives.
09March2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
STATEMENT by #NotInMyMarineCorps on the discovery of the AnonIB photo sharing site:
Not In My Marine Corps as an organization condemns the actions of service members revealed by Business Insider in the article “The Marine Corps’ nude-photo-sharing scandal is even worse than first realized,” specifically their participation in the photo sharing site AnonIB. Not In My Marine Corps was founded in an effort to bring to light a pervasive attitude that undermines and demeans women in the Marine Corps. As an organization we included women of all services who wished to share their stories of harassment and assault, knowing this problem was not limited to the Marine Corps. The publication of this new information has only solidified our belief that the nature of the military must fundamentally change in order to provide equal opportunities, a safe work environment free from harassment and assault, and end the mentality in which women are considered substandard.
Over several days, military and legislative leaders have addressed the issues of punishing online sexual harassment. There is no substantive or comprehensive law that would punish the actions of those involved in Marines United or AnonIB. We are calling for legislation that makes it a federal crime to distribute a private, visual depiction of a person’s intimate parts, or of a person engaging in sexual conduct, with a disregard for a person’s lack of consent to the sharing. We also believe an amendment to the UCMJ is needed which specifically addresses instances of nonconsensual pornography and the use of social media pages like Marines United and AnonIB to distribute imagery obtained through nonconsensual means.
08March2017 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
STATEMENT by #NotInMyMarineCorps on our formation, goals, and mission:
In light of the recent story by Thomas Brennan at The War Horse, a group of dedicated active duty and veteran military women have joined together to create Not In My Marine Corps (#NotInMyMarineCorps). A group dedicated to sharing stories of online harassment, harassment in general, and sexual assault within the U.S. Military in an effort to shine a light on the pervasive behaviors and attitudes that lead to such toxic behavior. We demand all service women, service men and civilians receive the protections and respect they deserve, and are not subject to behaviors by service members which encourage rape culture and sexism. We demand that the nature of the military must fundamentally change in order to provide equal opportunities, a safe work environment free from harassment and assault, and end the mentality in which women are considered inferior.
Our Mission is to bring to light stories of sexual assault and harassment and show that this is a continuing issue that has been ignored and cultivated by military leadership through ignorance or dismissal. We wish to provide a landing page for service women and men which will support them with information and ways to report harassment or assault. It is with sincere hope that we can end the stigma associated with reporting, show military leadership the true scope of harassment and assault within the U.S. Military, and bring an end to such acts. We wish to provide information to help service members remove harmful information and photographs from the internet that have been illegally shared, permissively taken without their knowledge, or stolen from their personal social media sites.
We are taking a stand, we will no longer accept being told that the online issues are “too big to handle”. Women service members have brought sites like F’in Boot, JTTOTS (Just The Tip Of The Spear), and similar sites to Marines United to their leadership for over a decade. We have been ignored. Women have been subject to surreptitious photo sharing within units and bases for decades. These photographs are taken without our knowledge, stolen, and or shared beyond the original intended recipient. It has been laughed off by military leadership and members as harmless, expected, or invited. This behavior is not harmless and we demand an end to it.
These attitudes are founded in a segregated boot camp within the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps is currently the only military service to segregate women and men in basic training. This, from the start, perpetuates a discriminative environment where women are viewed as menial and not “real” Marines. This directly contributes to higher levels of harassment and assault. We demand that this practice of segregation and exclusion ends.
Marine Corps and military leadership must take a role in encouraging and promoting the capabilities of women service members and recognize the character elements that women service members bring to the military. Women service members have contributed greatly, not only within the Marine Corps but all services, to win the nations battles. We only need to mention the Lioness Teams in Iraq and the Female Engagement Teams in Iraq and Afghanistan as one example.
To our sisters in uniform, you are not alone. We are here to support you, to fight for you, to give you a place to share your stories, and to help you come back from harassment and assault a stronger woman. We are on the right side of history and our fight will provide a better military not only for our future sisters and daughters but for all military members.