President Joe Biden Signs Executive Order Honoring Vanessa Guillén


AP Photo/LM Otero

By Araceli Cruz

January 27, 2022

“This is a very emotional and a very proud moment for my family,” Vanessa Guillén’s sister Mayra said.

It’s been two years since the Guillén family began their fight for justice over the murder of their daughter and sister — Fort Hood soldier Vanessa Guillén. They demanded revolutionary changes within the military, and yesterday, President Joe Biden finally made that happen. The president signed an executive order making sexual harassment a crime under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. 

“Today, I signed an Executive Order to strengthen how our military justice system addresses several forms of gender-based violence — and added sexual harassment as an offense under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, in honor of Army Specialist Vanessa Guillén,” President Biden tweeted. 

Vanessa’s sister, Mayra, tweeted: It took so much to put my feelings aside and fight for what’s right. I didn’t have a chance to grieve… Looking for you on a daily basis for almost two months, not knowing the outcome. Tears of both joy and sadness. You made the world a better place. Now let’s fight for justice.”

Since Vanessa first went missing in April 2020, the Guillén family led the way in the search for the 20-year-old. When her body was finally recovered two months later, they worked diligently with members of Congress to make sure women in the military were protected. As a result, the two forces passed the I Am Vanessa Guillen Act, with bipartisan support, which changed how military sexual assault is prosecuted.

“This is a very emotional and a very proud moment for my family,” Guillén’s sister Mayra said in a written statement.


  • Araceli Cruz

    Araceli is Copper Courier's social media manager. Her past work has been published in The Guardian, Teen Vogue, Refinery29, Mic, The Cut, Zora, The Village Voice, Rolling Stone, and others.



Local News

Related Stories
Share This