The Department of Defense (DoD) Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) Program helps prevent sexual assault involving service members through training and education programs; provides treatment and support to victims of sexual assault; and promotes military system accountability when sexual assaults are reported and investigated.
Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC). The SARC serves as the single point of contact at the installation/unit level to coordinate a response to sexual assault when a report is made, assisting the senior commander in ensuring victims receive responsive care, and referring or assigning victims to a victim advocate.
Victim Advocates. Victim advocates are available twenty-four hours a day through personal or telephonic contact to help victims of sexual assault consider their options and learn more about their rights, with the goal of ensuring victims are actively involved in all aspects of their safety and service plans. Victim advocacy services include:
- Assessment of safety and assistance developing a safety plan
- Assessment of medical needs, information about a sexual assault forensic examination and referral to medical care
- Information about the installation’s response to a report of sexual assault, including information about reporting options and the military disciplinary system
- Comprehensive information about and referral to military and civilian resources
Reporting. Victims who want to pursue an official investigation of a sexual assault can report to their command or anyone in their unit, the SARC, law enforcement, a victim advocate, chaplain, healthcare personnel and/or a judge advocate. Victims will not jeopardize their restricted report if they report their sexual assault to their SARC, victim advocate, healthcare personnel, and/or the chaplain. Restricted reporting enables victims to access medical and victim advocacy services without command or law enforcement involvement.
Policy. DoD Instruction 6495.02, “Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program Procedures,” provides more detail on SAPR, the role of the SARC and victim advocates, and sexual assault reporting options.
Support and advocacy through the SARC and victim advocates are offered to service members on active duty, including Military Service Academy cadets and midshipmen, and Reserve Component service members performing inactive duty training. Note: Reserve components can receive military sexual trauma support through the Department of Veteran Affairs if no longer on active duty status.
Support and victim advocacy services are available worldwide to victims of sexual assault.
Department of Defense Policy
Department of Defense Legislation
Department of Defense Service Regulations and Orders
How Military Leaders Can Help Prevent Sexual Assault
Sexual Assault Prevention & Response Program Info Paper
Sexual Assault Reporting Options Info Paper