A gate at Fort Hood, Texas, leading to the 3rd Cavalry Regiment area where Spc. Vanessa Guillén was killed by a fellow soldier last spring, now bears her name and picture.
Guilléns two sisters, who spoke after the dedication ceremony Monday, called the gate a reminder of the progress made so far. But the sisters added that more needs to be done to change how the Army prevents sexual harassment in the ranks.
Before she was killed, Guillén told her family she was a victim of sexual harassment but had not reported it to her chain of command for fear of repercussions.
This is an honor for Vanessa this is a step in the right direction, said Mayra Guillen, the older sister. For me, I try to see things in a positive way. This gate will [remind] all those soldiers who go in day and night that what happened shouldnt happen ever again.
Racism is a scourge in American society. It's also a serious public health threat, according to the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In a statement released Thursday, Dr. Rochelle Walensky pointed to the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color, as seen in case numbers, deaths and social consequence.
"Yet, the disparities seen over the past year were not a result of COVID-19," Walensky said. "Instead, the pandemic illuminated inequities that have existed for generations and revealed for all of America a known, but often unaddressed, epidemic impacting public health: racism."
"What we know is this: racism is a serious public health threat that directly affects the well-being of millions of Americans," she added. "As a result, it affects the health of our entire nation. Racism is not just the discrimination against one group based on the color of their skin or their race or ethnicity, but the structural barriers that impact racial and ethnic groups differently to influence where a person lives, where they work, where their children play, and where they worship and gather in community. These social determinants of health have life-long negative effects on the mental and physical health of individuals in communities of color."
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