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More rape survivors are afraid to report-Pentagon reports a decrease in sexual assault reported

Sexual assaults in the military declined slightly last year, the Pentagon announced today.

There were 3,158 reports of assaults ranging from rape to unwanted touching –  a decrease of two per cent on 2009.

Incidents involved assaults on people in uniform by fellow military members and by civilians, according to the Defence Department’s annual report

Figures show 4.4 percent of women on active duty and just under one percent of men reported experiencing unwanted sexual contact in the period up to last September.

Acknowledging  there is still work to do on the issue, officials credited the improvement on more training and other prevention efforts started in 2005.

They say the trend over the last few years shows more victims are coming forward to report the assaults.

In 2007, there were 2,688 cases investigated by the department.

Clifford Stanley, undersecretary of defence for personnel and readiness, said: ‘The department’s position on sexual assault is clear: One sexual assault is one too many.

‘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.’

Although efforts by the Pentagon to prevent and respond to assault cases appears to be paying off,  the department is reviewing its procedures and planning a uniform approach across the services.

The review will include enhancements to policies related to:

  • Privileged communications between victims and their advocates.
  • Expedited unit/organization transfers for victims.
  • Access to legal counsel for victims.
  • Experts to assist and prosecute.

This year’s sexual-assault report incorporates results from the quadrennial “2010 Workplace and Gender Relations Survey of Active Duty Members,” an anonymous, voluntary Pentagon survey that measures gender issues among armed forces personnel, the department said.

1 thought on “More rape survivors are afraid to report-Pentagon reports a decrease in sexual assault reported”

  1. I am not surprised. I was raped in the Coast Guard and did not report it. You have to choose between reporting the assault or keeping your career. I have not seen anyone ever prosecuted for rape so really what the point?

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