FORT HOOD, Texas (KWTX) - An advisory committee that’s helped create seven decades worth of progress for women serving in the military is now being threatened to be disbanded.

Army Veteran Michelle Dietert was surprised to hear the Department of Defense’s suspension of the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the services.

“Each minority group has specific needs that need to be addressed in the military and I believe that’s the case for women,” she said.

The decision was made as part of a cost and efficiency review. While the group hasn’t been officially disbanded, ideas have already been proposed to do that or roll the group into the newly formed committee on diversity and inclusion. The idea has some members of congress and veterans believing it will create more problems than solutions.

“One large diversity committee is not going to be able to address the many issues that’re faced by not just women, but other various minority groups in the military,” Dietert said.

“I think it’s important to have different committees to address these issues for these groups.”

For the last 70 years, the group has helped with issues like training, dress code and consideration for specific occupations originally held by men. As some members of congress debate to introduce a bill requiring the committee to remain, Dietert says action must be taken quickly before time runs out.

“It surely won’t hurt for them to go ahead and introduce the bill,” she said.

“It seems like there’s always this war between doing what’s right to protect these groups... It’s not that these groups deserve special rights, they should simply have the same access to things that everyone else has access to.”

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