Army announces pilot program to deal with sexual assault and harassment

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Following a study of sexual assault and harassment issues at Fort Hood, the Army has planned a redesign of its Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program

To that end, the Army will launch a one-year pilot establishing a fusion directorate designed to care for, protect and empower victims.

The fusion directorate will offer an additional reporting mechanism and coordinated medical, investigative, legal and support services that are independent of a victim`s immediate command.

The fusion directorate and its assigned staff will operate outside of a victim`s immediate chain of command, offering an additional mechanism for reporting sexual assault or sexual harassment incidents.

“Soldiers and DA Civilians must feel comfortable raising allegations of sexual harassment or sexual assault, quickly receive the care and services they need, and be treated with dignity and respect throughout the process,” said Lt. Gen. Gary M. Brito, the deputy chief of staff of G-1 and a tri-chair of the People First Task Force, which is leading efforts to redesign the SHARP program.

“The fusion directorate is designed to ensure that sexual assault victims experience a supportive and compassionate response from a team of professionals working under the direct oversight of a senior commander.”

Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland; Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Fort Irwin, California; Fort Riley, Kansas; and Fort Sill, Oklahoma will host pilot sites, which are expected to open in early 2022.

In announcing the pilot program, a statement said The Army continues to make policy changes to help ensure that a Soldier`s report of sexual assault or sexual harassment is always met with a timely and effective response.

The Fort Hood study offered a total of seventy recommendations for dealing with the issues, and the Army is taking steps to implement all of them.

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