SEXUAL ASSAULT PREVENTION & RESPONSE
“Sexual assault has no place in our Air Force. We live in a culture of respect. We cherish our core values of integrity, service and excellence. But in order to ensure all Airmen experience and benefit from those values, we must eliminate sexual assault in our ranks.” – Mark Welsh III, General, former U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff
The United States Air Force Academy, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) is under the direction of the Program Manager and consists of two Sexual Assault Response Coordinators (SARC) along with a Deputy SARC, Department of Defense (DoD) civilian Victim Advocates, and volunteer victim advocates. All staff members, including volunteer victim advocates, are nationally certified through the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Advocate Certification Program.
Under guidance from the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO) and the Air Force Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program, we provide victim advocacy, prevention education, training and outreach services to HQ USAFA, Cadet Wing, Faculty, Athletic Department, 10 Air Base Wing, Preparatory School and other mission partners.
The fundamentals of sexual assault prevention include:
- Preventing Violence Before it Occurs
- Preventing Perpetration
- Promoting Prevention at Every Level
- Providing Ongoing Prevention Activities
When a victim reports a sexual assault we start our initial response protocol including but not limited to:
- Ensuring the victim understands speaking to SAPR is voluntary.
- Assessing for imminent danger of life-threatening or physical harm to the victim by themselves (suicidal), by another (homicidal), or to another (homicidal).
- Ascertaining the victim’s immediate needs.
- Encouraging the victim to seek medical consultation/care and providing them resources.
- Appropriately explaining each reporting options available to the victim including the exceptions and/or limitations to each.
- Advising victim on the availability to provide ongoing advocacy services for as long as desired.
Ongoing assistance related to recovery from a sexual assault includes but is not limited to:
- Maintain follow-up contact with the victim as requested by the victim.
- Support the victim in decision-making by providing relevant information and discussing available options and resources.
- Supporting the victim in advocating on their own behalf.
- Accompany the victim to appointments and civilian and military court proceedings, as appropriate and when requested by the victim.
The Air Force has avenues for reporting sexual assault in the form of Restricted and Unrestricted Reporting. Restricted Reporting allows a victim to report a Sexual Assault without triggering an investigation. It is intended to give the victim (survivor) time and control over the release of their information. Further, it also empowers the survivor to make an informed decision about participating in the criminal process.
Restricted: Confidential reporting that allows a service member, cadet, adult dependent, or a defense civilian to report a sexual assault and seek support services such as mental health, victim advocacy, and legal representation. Office of Special Investigations (OSI) and chain of command will NOT be notified. Service Members, cadets, who desire Restricted Reporting must use one of the following reporting avenues Report to SARC, Victim Advocate, Chaplain, health care provider, AOC/AMT not in chain of command and/or any SAPR staff member.
Unrestricted: Reporting option for service members, cadets, adult dependents, and defense civilians to report a sexual assault and seek accountability for the reported offender. An investigation will be initiated and “need to know” individuals in the chain of command will be notified. Respect for privacy remains a priority with this option, as well. When selecting Unrestricted Reporting, you should use current reporting channels, e.g.: Anyone who is a mandatory reporter.
Independent: Reporting option for someone other than a victim, such as a friend, co-worker, or mandatory reporter, to report a sexual assault.
SEXUAL ASSAULT DEFINED
Sexual assault is criminal conduct that falls well short of the standards America expects of its men and women in uniform and is a violation of our Air Force Core Values.
Sexual Assault is unwanted sexual contact characterized by use of force, physical threat, abuse of power, or when the victim does not or cannot consent. Examples: inappropriate touching, groping, or fondling for sexual gratification, as well as penetration, oral stimulation, sodomy, or any attempt to do these things.
Consent can be obtained verbally or through body language or gestures as long as they are unambiguous and ongoing. It is everyone’s responsibility to be 100% certain that they have consent. A person cannot consent if they are incapacitated, for example by alcohol, drugs, or sleep deprivation. The lack of physical resistance or a verbal “no” does not constitute consent.
Victim advocacy is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling our hotline: (719) 333-7272. We respond to calls both on and off base.
DoD 2019-2023 Prevention Plan of Action
SAPR Program AFI 36-6001
SAPR Acronyms/ Definitions
Air Force Judge Advocate General’s Corp (JAG)
USAF Sexual Assault Prevention & Response (SAPR)
National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRA)