Thursday, October 14, 2021

US Military Punishes Sexual Assault Whistleblowers


Amy Franck and Amber Fitzwater were hired by the pentagon to help the military combat sexual assault. Instead they've become whistleblowers who have been retaliated against and sexually assaulted. Amy (, Amber and investigative journalist Rich McHugh ( join the show to share their stories and talk about the way the US Military deals, or doesn't deal, with the its endemic sexual assault problem. Amy Braley Franck began her career as a Department of the Army Civilian in July of 2013 as a Victim Advocate and has held the position of Sexual Assault Response Coordinator and Sexual Assault Program Manager for a 2- and 3-star Army Service Component Commands. Ms. Braley Franck has been identified on two separate occasions as a whistleblower for her actions to protect her clients. Ms. Braley Franck holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and Business from the University of Maryland. Ms. Braley Franck is credentialed through NOVA D-SCAAP as Level IV Military Advocate. She is a certified Child Abuse Investigator and Nationally certified Forensic Interviewer, conducting interviews for local law enforcement, Army CID, FBI and Homeland Security and has been tendered an expert witness in Child Molestation and Abuse hearings. She has been recognized for her contributions and service to President Biden’s Independent Review Commission to implement the change needed to shift to a proactive prevention model throughout the DoD. She is the founder of non-profit Never Alone Advocacy ( Amber Fitzwater is a sexual assault response coordinator with the Army and has worked in the SHARP program since 2013. She is a level IV advocate, a certified clinical trauma intervention specialist, and is currently enrolled at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology working on her PhD in international psychology. She has over 16,000 hours of advocacy and has provided training to law enforcement and prosecutors about the neurobiological effects of trauma and the impacts on victim's memory to assist them in working with victims of sexual assault when it comes to interviewing and questioning them at trial. Ms. Fitzwater is also a survivor of sexual assault while working with the Army, and is a member of Ms. Braley Franck's non profit "Never Alone advocacy." Rich McHugh is an investigative reporter and serves as a correspondent for NewsNation. Over the past year, McHugh has reported extensively on the issue of sexual assault in our military. Prior to NewsNation, McHugh spent over twenty years as a producer in network television news. He served as a Supervising Producer in the NBC News Investigative Unit, where he and correspondent Ronan Farrow spent a year investigating sexual misconduct allegations against the Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. After their investigation was shut down at NBC, it was was published in The New Yorker magazine and won the Pulitzer prize, and has been widely credited as a catalyst for the #MeToo movement. As a contributor to Vanity Fair, McHugh published "You are to Stand Down," his personal account of how NBC killed it's Weinstein story, and "An Oral History Of A Predator" -- interviews with 30 Weinstein accusers. Prior to NBC, McHugh spent nearly a decade at ABC News, producing for Good Morning America. He has won an Edward R. Murrow award and five Emmy awards for his work. Born and raised in the Chicago area, he graduated from Columbia University in New York City. He lives in the New York City area with his wife, Danie, and their four young daughters.