This Year’s Defense Bill Includes Boost in Pay, Parental Leave, Military Justice Reform

The House passed a final, negotiated version of this year’s $768 billion national defense authorization (NDAA) bill, which was approved with overwhelming bipartisan support, reports National Public Radio.

200416 F Yq806 0206 YPhoto By: Johnny Saldivar, Air ForceOne of the most high-profile parts included in this year’s NDAA is the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which NPR called “a major overhaul” of the military justice system. The new code criminalizes sexual harassment and removes commanders from the decision-making process of crimes, such as rape, sexual assault, murder and kidnapping.

Also included in the NDAA is a 2.7% boost in pay and a guaranteed 12 weeks of parental leave for all service members.

Left out of the bill, however, is a provision that would have expanded the draft to include women, reports NPR. Though there hasn’t been a draft since 1973, proponents of the provision felt it would have represented another step toward gender parity between female and male service members. 

The bill now heads to the Senate, where it is expected to pass.