Advocacy Groups Push for Women to Register for Draft
Draft on "standby"
Now that the ban prohibiting military women from front-line combat has been lifted, advocacy groups are pushing all young female adults to register for the "standby" draft. The Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN) believes that, like men, requiring women ages 18 to 35 to sign up for Selective Service is the next logical step. “Lifting the ban on women officially serving in combat is about giving qualified women the opportunity to serve and making our military stronger, and that would include having women register for Selective Service," said Anu Bhagwati, executive director of SWAN and a former Marine Corps captain. “If you are going to say ‘total equality’ in the military, that has to include Selective Service registration,” said Cassaundra StJohn, who served in the Air Force and Air Force Reserve between 1985 and 1998. Amid his historic announcement last week, Panetta alerted administrators of the Selective Service System “to exercise some judgment based on what we just did.” (NBC)