Family Advocacy Program - The Essentials

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The Family Advocacy Program, or FAP, is the Department of Defense program designated to address domestic abuse, child abuse and neglect, and problematic sexual behavior in children and youth. FAP works on every military installation where families are assigned, and supports service members, their spouses, partners and families to prevent abuse, promote victim safety and offer treatment and rehabilitation for healing after a traumatic event has occurred.

Learn more about how FAP works, how to get help and additional options for assistance in the event you, your child or someone you care about is impacted by violence or abuse.

How the Family Advocacy Program works

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Domestic abuse and intimate partner violence

The Department of Defense does not tolerate domestic abuse, and violence of any kind degrades military readiness. Through FAP, each of the military services is committed to promoting a culture of support for victims, and works with service members and their families to promote the rehabilitation of individuals who use violence in their relationships to learn healthy behaviors. Victim safety is always the number one priority.

Understanding the military response to domestic abuse

Getting help for domestic abuse and intimate partner violence

  • Use the Victim Advocacy Search Tool to find the FAP victim advocate closest to you
  • Call Military One Source to be connected to your closest Family Advocacy Program, 800-342-9647
  • Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 800-799-7233 or chat with an advocate at thehotline.org

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Child abuse and neglect

The Department of Defense does not tolerate child abuse and neglect, and is dedicated to ensuring the safety of every child in the military community. Through FAP, each of the military services works with service members and their families to promoting nurturing, healthy environments for children and youth. When child maltreatment does occur, FAP swiftly responds and works with child protective services, command, parents, and law enforcement to secure the child’s safety.

Identifying and reporting child abuse and neglect

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Getting help for child abuse and neglect

Problematic sexual behavior in children and youth

A new Department of Defense policy expands the responsibility of its Family Advocacy Program, to include addressing problematic sexual behavior in children and youth. Problematic sexual behavior in children and youth is defined as behavior, initiated by children and youth under the age of 18, that involves using sexual or private body parts in a manner that is developmentally inappropriate or potentially harmful to the individual or the individuals impacted by the behavior.

Identifying and reporting Problematic Sexual Behavior in Children and Youth

Getting help for problematic sexual behavior in children and youth