The National Defense Authorization Act is now headed to President Joe Biden's desk after the U.S. Senate passed the bill on Wednesday.
Supporters of the bill said it will put in place necessary reforms on how the U.S. military handles crimes, including how sexual misconduct and harassment are handled. Many reforms are inspired by the sexual assault and murder of Vanessa Guillén that took place at Fort Hood in Central Texas.
"This bill ... will finally become a vehicle of justice for all victims of sexual assault and harassment in the military, while transforming the institution's culture — it will ensure that what happened to Spc. Vanessa Guillén never happens again to another soldier," said Houston U.S. Rep. Sylvia Garcia.
Guillén's sister, Mayra, took to social media Wednesday afternoon to express what the "bittersweet" passing of this bill means for her.
THE BILL HAS BEEN PASSED. #NDAA #IamVanessaGuillen this is a bittersweet feeling. The loss of my sister created the biggest military law change in history. I awaited so long for this day. All our work payed off. There’s more to come. Amen. @WhistleblowerLF 🙏🏻— Mayra Guillen (@mguilen_) December 15, 2021
"It's been a long road to get #JusticeForVanessaGuillen, but we kept up the fight & now, these reforms will go to @POTUS' desk," said Garcia in a statement.