House Approves Dingell-backed Bill to Require Pentagon to Track, Report on Military Hazing
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) released the following statement today after the House approved the Harry Lew Military Hazing Accountability and Prevention Act as part of the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Dingell co-sponsored the legislation with Representatives Judy Chu (CA-27), Jackie Speier (CA-14), and Ted Lieu (CA-33) to require the Pentagon to track, survey, and make annual reports on the problem of hazing in the military.
“Since the death of my constituent Raheel Siddiqui at Parris Island earlier this year, I have been committed to ensuring his family receives the answers they deserve and that the Marine Corps addresses the serious issues that led to this tragedy,” said Dingell. “Today the House took an important step toward bringing more transparency and accountability to the system so hazing is tracked and handled appropriately in our military ranks. The men and women who step up to serve our country in uniform should receive fair treatment on their way to becoming our nation’s finest fighters. This is an important step toward ensuring a tragedy like this never happens again.”
The Harry Lew Military Hazing Accountability and Prevention Act, named in honor of Rep. Chu’s nephew, a marine who died after being hazed by his platoon in Afghanistan in 2011, would require the Pentagon to create a database of hazing incidents in the military, in addition to conducting an annual survey of servicemembers to determine the prevalence of hazing incidents and submitting an annual report on what is being done to stop hazing through training and response.
This follows a report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released in February of this year that showed that the Department of Defense (DoD) lacks consistent data on military hazing incidents, and that servicemembers across branches are in need of better training to combat hazing.