There are thousands of ways to report sexual assault, but one thing is certain: it’s not easy to come forward.
This is especially true when the perpetrator is a member of the military.
And it’s a problem that’s worsened in recent years, according to new findings from the Department of Defense.
In an extensive report published on Wednesday, the DoD’s Office of the Inspector General found that the military has a problem with its response to sexual assault and other misconduct allegations.
It is also concerned about a lack of effective mechanisms for investigating such allegations, and says there’s a lack, in particular, of clear and uniform standards for how to handle allegations of sexual misconduct.
The report, based on a review of records from more than 3,500 cases, found that in some cases, the military had not investigated the allegations seriously enough.
For example, while the DoJ found that 1,091 cases were investigated, only six resulted in an investigation being conducted.
The agency found that of the 909 cases, only 45 resulted in criminal charges.
The military is not required to investigate all sexual misconduct allegations made against its members, and a number of those cases, according the report, “have been investigated by the military’s own internal disciplinary processes.”
The DoD also noted that the DoP has not fully addressed the issue of whether it has adequately implemented a “zero-tolerance policy” for sexual harassment and assault in the military, which is aimed at “ensuring that misconduct is thoroughly investigated, adjudicated and prosecuted.”
The report also highlighted problems in the way the military responds to sexual misconduct accusations.
The report found that it has not consistently implemented training for members of the armed forces on how to report their own sexual misconduct to superiors, and that the process for reporting sexual misconduct by the armed services is unclear and inconsistent.
In some cases that training is not mandatory.
And in a handful of cases, it appears that some commanders are reluctant to intervene in sexual misconduct cases because they don’t want to be held accountable.
While the report found there are a number more serious crimes than sexual assault that are not covered by the DoPs reporting system, it also found that sexual assault is still a problem in the armed force.
“There is no single, uniform set of standards for reporting alleged misconduct, and these standards vary from department to department,” the report says.
In a statement, DoD Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Esper said that the report underscores that the armed service has an urgent need to address this problem and said that it’s important for all members of our service to be able to report abuse and assault.
“It is important that we treat every allegation with the seriousness it deserves, that we provide support to survivors of sexual assault so that we can heal, and protect our own communities,” he said.
“Sexual assault in our military is a problem.
And the department continues to work hard to identify and address the root causes, and we are committed to improving the safety and security of all members in our Armed Forces.”