The National League of Female Veterans was created to act as an advocate of the issues facing female veterans and their families. There are currently almost two million female veterans. Traditional services for veterans do not always fit the needs of female veterans and those closest to them. This is due to the fact that women veterans are sometimes the family’s sole caregivers, services and benefits designed to promote independent living for combat-injured veterans will need to consider other needs.
Moreover, the issue of Military Sexual Trauma reports, or MST, is the term used by VA to refer to experiences of sexual assault or repeated, threatening sexual harassment that a Veteran experienced during his or her military service. The definition used by the VA comes from Federal law (Title 38 U.S. Code 1720D) and is “psychological trauma, which in the judgment of a VA mental health professional, resulted from a physical assault of a sexual nature, battery of a sexual nature, or sexual harassment which occurred while the Veteran was serving on active duty or active duty for training.” Sexual harassment is further defined as "repeated, unsolicited verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature which is threatening in character.”
According to national data from the Department of Veteran Affairs, about 1 in 5 women and 1 in 100 men respond “yes,” that they experienced MST, when screened by their VA health care provider. Although rates of MST are higher among women, because there are so many more men than women in the military, there are actually significant numbers of women and men seen in VA who have experienced MST. These rates are almost certainly an underestimate of the actual rate of MST, given that in general sexual trauma is frequently under reported.
Finally, there is the issue of unemployment or underemployment of the female veterans population. Women currently comprise 15 percent of active military personnel, 17 percent of Reserve and National Guard forces, and 20 percent of new military recruits. Many will return to rural areas to support their families and to seek employment. Women veterans seeking employment in non-metropolitan areas often face challenges that differ from their urban counterparts such as geographical barriers, limited available positions, and a lack of childcare resources within their communities
These challenges may be further exacerbated by a complex set of issues,including untreated physical and psychological disorders such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) resulting from combat, Military Sexual Trauma (MST), or other traumas associated with military service, which can often delay the transition process complex issues such as these must be addressed by transition programs that provide both practical and psychological support.
In light of the aforementioned issues the National League of Female Veterans Inc. adopts the following Mission and Vision Statements:
"Enim, Amplexum,Adificationem, etPosse "iis qui Servite""..... "
"For the Embracement, Edification and Empowerment of "Those Who Serve".....