Breaking News
More () »

President Biden signs Executive Order to implement provisions of the 'I Am Vanessa Guillen Act'

The announcement came via a news release from the Guillen family attorney Natalie Khawam.

WASHINGTON, D.C., USA — President Joe Biden signed an executive order Wednesday to implement provisions of the "I Am Vanessa Guillen Act."

Mayra Guillen, Vanessa's sister, announced the signing on Twitter, adding "this is a very emotional & a very proud moment for my family." 

"Honor in your memory Vanessa. You’re in my heart and mind 24/7 sister. Love you," she wrote."

According to the Guillen family attorney, Natalie Khawam, the order will also "make sexual harassment an offense in the Uniform Code of Military Justice and strengthen the military's response to domestic violence and the wrongful broadcast or distribution of intimate visual images."

The order comes just weeks after President Biden signed the National Defense Authorization Act, which included provisions of the I Am Vanessa Guillen Act.

Story continues below.

"We did a lot of meetings with the White House, the Pentagon, with Congress members, with the House members, Senate members and with reporters," said Khawam. This has been a 24-7 job for me over the last year and a half. I'm proud to say that none of us failed. None of us gave up. We continued to fight for this "

The I Am Vanessa Guillen Act allows alleged victims of a sex crime to report the incidents outside their chain of command. It was introduced by the Guillen family after Guillen was killed on Fort Hood in April, 2020.

"Not only did we change a law we changed history," said Khawam.

Guillen told her family she was being sexually harassed but didn't report it to her superiors for fear of retaliation.

Biden signed the order Wednesday afternoon.

Cecily Aguilar is the only person charged in connection to Guillen's death. She is awaiting trial in Waco.

Aguilar told investigators that Fort Hood soldier Aaron Robinson killed Guillen and she helped him dismember and bury her remains, according to court documents. Robinson killed himself July 1, 2020, one day after Guillen's remains were found.