DOD Releases Sexual Assault Report
By Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 17, 2011 Defense Department officials today released the Pentagon’s annual report on sexual assault in the military.
The report -- for fiscal 2010 -- also incorporates results from the quadrennial “2010 Workplace and Gender Relations Survey of Active Duty Members,” an anonymous and voluntary survey conducted by the Defense Manpower Data Center, which measures gender issues among members of the armed forces.
Noting that “one sexual assault is one too many” in a news release announcing the report’s release, Clifford L. Stanley, undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, said sexual assault has absolutely no place in today’s armed forces.
“We are firmly committed to doing our best to ensure that those who have stepped forward to protect our country are themselves protected within the ranks,” Stanley stated in the release.
Defense officials said that over the last two years, the department has made significant efforts to prevent and respond to sexual assault, but work remains to improve and integrate those efforts across the department and the military services.
Officials are assessing the structure of the Defense Department’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office, the release said, working to develop a “more comprehensive approach to prevent and handle sexual assaults” across the services.
The review addresses privileged communications between victims and their advocates, expedited unit transfers for victims, access to legal counsel for victims, and experts to assist and prosecute, officials said.