Stand up against sexual assault

  • Published
  • By Heather Van Mill
  • 62nd Airlift Wing Sexual Assault Response Coordinator
Sexual Assault is the most underreported violent crime in America today. Because of this, the Air Force strives to ensure all Airmen are aware sexual assault is a crime.

To combat sexual assault, the Department of Defense has implemented the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response program, which incorporates a comprehensive policy that reinforces a culture of prevention, response and accountability.

The goal of the SAPR program is to ensure the safety, dignity and well-being of all Air Force members through training and education programs and the treatment and support of victims.

Since 2004, advancements in reporting options have helped create a climate of confidence in reporting.

One of the policies implemented in 2005 was the restricted reporting options, which enables victims to come forward without triggering the investigation process, yet still receive the care that they deserve.

Sixty-five percent of the increase in sexual assault reports involving members of the Armed Services can be attributed to the restricted reporting option.

The alternate choice, coupled with enhanced awareness of sexual assault and vigorous training, has encouraged more victims to take a stand against their assailant.