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Female Troops Suffer From Poorly-Fitting Body Armor

Female soldier
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Above: Female soldier

You've come a long way, baby...but not far enough to warrant military body armor that that fits you properly. At least not yet. But of last week, the House Armed Services Committee has called upon the U.S. Army to assess the issue, according to the Washington Post:

In the panel’s report accompanying the FY 2013 defense-authorization bill, the Armed Services Committee directs the Army secretary to brief congressional committees within six months about its progress on protective equipment for female soldiers. They note that the budget request included $15 million to develop better protective gear and an additional $11.9 million to create prototypes.

After the Washington Post published the article about the ill-fitting body armor, "sbgmk" commented on its website:

Could not agree more. During my last deployment and as I prepare for my next, I have to get body armor issued in a size larger than I need in order to accomadate the "curves", which leave me swimming in it everywhere else. No amount of cinching the straps helps.

The issue is not just one of comfort for female troops. As of May 14, more than 14,000 military jobs in close proximity to combat opened up to women in the military. In February the Department of Defense tweaked the the 1994 Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule that banned female service members from working in positions near combat units - positions like tank mechanics and field artillery radar operators.

Have you ever experienced problems because military body armor isn't made to fit a woman's shape? Write about it in our comments section!

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