The Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) Program helps prevent sexual assaults from occurring through training and education programs; to provide treatment and support to victims of sexual assault; and to promote military system accountability when sexual assaults are reported and investigated. At the installation level, Sexual Assault Response Coordinators (SARCs) or victim advocates are available to work with victims and help them consider their options and learn more about their rights.
- Definition of Sexual Assault. The DoD SAPR Program defines sexual assault as intentional sexual contact characterized by use of force, threats, intimidation, abuse of authority, or when the victim does not or cannot consent. Sexual assault includes rape, forcible sodomy (oral or anal sex), and other unwanted and inappropriate sexual contact that is aggravated, abusive, or wrongful (to include unwanted and inappropriate sexual contact), or attempts to commit these acts.
- Restricted and Unrestricted Reporting. A policy issued by the DoD established a confidential reporting option for victims of sexual assault.
- Restricted Reporting. Victims may disclose the sexual assault to the SARC, victim advocate, or a healthcare provider without a formal report being made to law enforcement or command. Victims choosing this option receive appropriate medical care and will also be referred to a victim advocate for further services. The victim advocate will provide the victim with information about reporting to command and will help the victim weigh the pros and cons of choosing to report at a later time.
- Unrestricted Reporting. Victims who want to pursue an official investigation of the incident can elect the unrestricted reporting option and use current reporting channels, such as command, law enforcement, or the SARC. There are exceptions to the restricted reporting option for victims, including when disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the safety of the victim or another individual.
Anyone who is entitled to receive care at a military treatment facility is eligible to receive medical treatment for a sexual assault. Active duty service members, to include Military Service Academy cadets and midshipmen, or National Guard or Reserve service members when performing active service and inactive duty (as defined in section 101(d)(3) under Title 10) or a member of the Coast Guard when the Coast Guard is operating as a Service of the Department of the Navy are eligible for the restricted reporting option. Members of the Reserve Component not performing federal duty, retired members of any component, and DoD civilian employees are not eligible for the restricted reporting option or benefits.
These programs are available worldwide on military installations.