Military Sexual Trauma, a term originally coined by the Department of Veterans Affairs, refers to “psychological trauma which in the judgment of a mental health professional employed by the Department, resulted from a physical assault of a sexual nature, battery of a sexual nature, or sexual harassment that is repeated, unsolicited verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature which is threatening in character and occurred while the veteran was serving on active duty or active duty for training.” This definition has been expanded to include active duty service members, reservists, and students at military academies.

Members of the five military branches—Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines under the Department of Defense, and Coast Guard under the Department of Homeland Security—have two different options for reporting sexual violence and receiving military services:

  • Restricted Report:
    • Offers the opportunity for a victim to make a confidential report which will afford:
      • Access to health care (medical and/or mental);
      • Advocacy by a SARC (Sexual Assault Response Coordinator)/SHARP (Sexual Harassment/Assault Response & Prevention Coordinator - Army only) or Sexual Assault Prevention & Response Victim Advocate (SAPR VA, often abbreviated to VA)
      • Legal Counsel by a Special Victims Counsel (SVC), which serves Air Force, Army, and Coast guard) or Victims Legal Counsel (VLC), which serves Marines and Navy
    • Is available to:
      • Active Duty
      • Their Adult Dependents
      • National Guard & Reserve
    • Can only be made to:
      • SARC/SHARP
      • SAPR VA
      • Healthcare personnel
    • Can be converted to an Unrestricted Report at a later time.
  • Unestricted Report:
    • Offers the opportunity for a victim to make a confidential report which will afford:
      • Access to health care (medical and/or mental);
      • Advocacy by a SARC or SAPR VA
      • Legal Counsel by an SVC or VLC
      • An official investigation
    • Is available to:
      • Active Duty
      • Their Adult Dependents
      • National Guard & Reserve
      • DoD civilians
      • DoD contractors (OCONUS-Outside the Continental United States)
    • Can be made to:
      • SARC
      • SAPR VA
      • Healthcare personnel
      • Law Enforcement
      • Commander/Commanding Officer (job duty, not rank)
    • Cannot be converted to a Restricted Report.

STATISTICS: