Government


Statement by the President on Department of Defense Initiatives to Combat Sexual Assault in the Military

 

 

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

April 23, 2012

I applaud the initiatives that Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta and General Martin Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have announced to further combat sexual assault in the military. The men and women of the United States military deserve an environment that is free from the threat of sexual assault, and in which allegations of sexual assault are thoroughly investigated, offenders are held appropriately accountable, and victims are given the care and support they need. Elevating these cases to a higher level of command review is a very important step. I believe that sexual assault has no place in our military. I thank Secretary Panetta and Chairman Dempsey and look forward to seeing continued progress on this important issue.

Link to the Official White House Statement

 

Combating Sexual Assault in the United States Military

Department of Defense Initiatives to Combat Sexual Assault in the Military

Panetta, Dempsey Announce Initiatives to Stop Sexual Assault

 

Presidential Proclamation — National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, 2012

Presidential Proclamation — National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, 2012

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Secret Service Needs More Women, Lawmakers Say

 

Brian Knowlton
The New York Times
April 22, 2012

Two female lawmakers, both of them members of oversight committees, said Sunday that the dearth of women Secret Service agents might have contributed to the scandal linking agency personnel to prostitutes in Colombia. And they credited a female supervisor in the agency for bringing it to light.

The lawmakers, Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, Democrat of New York, and Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, were asked on the ABC program “This Week” about a report describing a female Secret Service supervisor, Paula Reid, who ordered the crackdown on agents working in Cartagena, Colombia, ahead of a visit by President Obama last weekend.

“She acted decisively, appropriately, and I can’t help but wonder if there’d been more women as part of that detail if this ever would have happened,” said Ms. Collins, ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee.

To read the full article at the New York Times, click here.

 

Additional Reporting:

Paula Reid, Rising Star of the Secret Service, The Washington Post, April 22, 2012

Special Agent In Charge Paula Reid

Security Clearances Suspended in Secret Service Scandal, The New York Times, April 23, 2012

Six Secret Service Agents Leave Amid Columbia Prostitute Scandal, ABC News, April 23, 2012

12th Military Member Tied To Prostitution Scandal, AP, April 23, 2012

Sexual Assault in the Military –
SAPRO Annual Report, DoD Initiatives

 

The Pentagon’s top civilian and military leaders took their campaign to stop sexual assault in the military to Capitol Hill, where they announced new initiatives to combat the problem.

“General Dempsey and I consider this a serious problem that needs to be addressed,” Secretary Panetta said. “It violates everything the U.S. military stands for.”

The U.S. Department of Defense released a statement on April 16, 2012 regarding the issue of sexual assault in the military.

The initiatives include:

  • Establishing with congressional approval a “special victims’ unit” within each service composed of specially trained experts in evidence collection, interviewing and working with victims;
  • Requiring that sexual assault policies be explained to all service members within 14 days of their entry into active duty;
  • Allowing National Guard and Reserve personnel who have been sexually assaulted to remain on active duty status to obtain the treatment and support afforded to active-duty members;
  • Requiring a record of the outcome of disciplinary and administrative proceedings related to sexual assault and retaining the records centrally;
  • Requiring commanders to conduct annual organizational climate assessments to measure whether they are meeting the department’s goal of a culture of professionalism and zero tolerance of sexual assault;
  • Enhancing training programs for sexual assault prevention, including training for new military commanders in handling sexual assault matters; and
  • Mandating wider public dissemination of available sexual assault resources, such as DOD’s “Safe Helpline,” a 24/7 helpline via Web, phone or text message operated by the nonprofit Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network.

To read the full Armed Forces Press Service article, click here.

 

 

US Department of Defense
Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office

 

US Department of Defense SAPRO – Annual Reports

Fact Sheet on Department of Defense Annual Report on Sexual Assault in the Military for Fiscal 2011 April 13, 2012  (DoD)

Briefing Paper: Department of Defense (DoD) Annual Report on Sexual Assault in the Military, Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 – Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN)

 

Media Coverage and Editorials:

Leon Panetta Lays Out New Rules to Combat Sexual Assault in U.S. Military,  The Daily Beast, April 18, 2012

Right Steps on Military Sexual Assault, The New York Times (Editorial), April 17, 2012

Panetta Offers Steps to Curb Sex Assault in Military, Reuters, April 16, 2012

Panetta, Dempsey Announce Initiatives to Stop Sexual Assault, Armed Forces Press Service, April 16, 2012

CNO: ‘Sexual Assault is an Attack on a Sailor’

 

Sam Fellman
Navy Times
April 2, 2012

Across the force, Navy personnel will attend educational standdowns in April that highlight ways sailors can respond to — and prevent — sexual assaults. The two hours worth of training is part of the Navy’s latest initiative to get sailors to report more offenses and to reduce the stubbornly-high number of assaults. It emphasizes that watching out for each other is everyone’s responsibility.

 

 

As for the severity of the problem, Navy officials are not mincing words.

“Folks, we’ve got to face the facts — sexual assault is an attack on a sailor,” Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jon Greenert wrote in post entitled “We have a problem…” on his official blog Sunday. “On average, these attacks take place every day.”

To read the full article at the Navy Times web site, click here.

 

Navy Personal Command — Sexual Assault

 

 

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month “Hurts one. Affects all”

 

Nationally, Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) occurs in April and commits to raising awareness and promoting the prevention of sexual violence through use of special events and public education. SAAM provides commands/installations an annual opportunity to highlight Department of Defense (DoD) and Service policies addressing sexual assault prevention and response. DoD policies address sexual assault prevention and seek to establish a climate of confidence in which:

education and training create an environment in which sexual assault and the attitudes that promote it are not tolerated;

victims of sexual assault receive the care and support that they need; and,

offenders are held accountable for their actions.

 

The goal of Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) is to raise public awareness about sexual violence and to educate communities and individuals on how to prevent sexual violence.

 

Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Gen. Ray Odierno’s public service announcement on preventing sexual assault for Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

 

For additional reporting and information on Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM), click the following links.

Sexual Assault Awareness Month – Home

MyDuty.mil — Hurts one. Affects all.

U.S. Army — National Sexual Assault Awareness Month

USMC  – SAPR Program

Office on Violence Against Women — U.S. Department of Justice

dcmilitary.com

 

SAPR.MIL | ARMY SHARP | MARINE CORPS COMMUNITY SERVICES | NAVY SAPR
AIR FORCE SAPR | COAST GUARD SAPRO | NATIONAL GUARD SAPR | MILITARY ONESOURCE

DOD Implements Changes to Sexual Assault Response

 

Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
American Forces Press Service
April 2, 2012

 

The Defense Department has refined new methods to aid sexual assault victims whether reporting a crime or seeking assistance as they transition from service, the director of the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO) said here March 30.

“We have several new options for victims of sexual assault,” said Air Force Maj. Gen. Mary Kay Hertog. “First, if you’ve been a victim of sexual assault in the military you now have the option of requesting an expedited transfer. We signed that into effect in December.”

“If you find it untenable or unbearable in the organization that you’re at … you can request to be transferred,” she added.

Hertog said a service member’s local commander has 72 hours to respond to the request for transfer, and if denied there is an option to take it to the first flag or general officer in the chain of command who also has 72 hours to respond.

To read the full article on the U.S. Department of Defense web site, click here.

 

Military Rape Speech 17 by Congresswoman Jackie Speier

 

 

Madame Speaker — I rise again to highlight the epidemic of rape and sexual assault in the military.

This is the 17th time I’ve stood on the House floor to tell the story of a brave member of the U.S. military who was raped or sexually assaulted by a fellow service member.

Today I will tell you the story of Elle Helmer who served at the prestigious Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C. at 8th and I from 2005-2006. The Marines who serve here in Washington are known throughout the military as the tip of the sword. They perform ceremonial roles and participate in the silent drill platoon.

You will notice that Elle’s story follows the exact same pattern as the dozens of stories I’ve told before and probably the same pattern of the estimated 19,000 rapes and sexual assaults that occurred in the military in 2010. This is the pattern of the epidemic.

To read the rest of Elle’s story as told by Rep. Jackie Speier, click here.

 

Are you a survivor of rape or sexual assault in the military? Congresswoman Speier is personally inviting you to share your story by e-mailing stopmilitaryrape@mail.house.gov. If you choose to share your experience with the Congresswoman, please indicate whether or not you are willing to give her your permission to share it on the House floor.

 

If you have experienced rape, sexual assault or harassment in military service, know that there are resources to help you. 

 

24/7 Emergency Crisis Care with offices in Washington DC and Cambridge MA. MRCC also has representatives in 35 states as well as Japan, Germany and England.

 

Survivor Support Network: Services, Resources, Hotlines, MST Forums, and Suggestions

 

 

 

Sexual Assault Support for the DoD Community

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