Tag Archives: sexual assaults

Students Remain Silent About Sexual Assaults

A report by the Australian Institute of Family reveals many students dismiss sexual assaults as merely part of the rough and tumble life one associates with being in school. The Institute estimates that one out of seven Australian girls has been the victim of sexual violence, but most are reluctant to report these incidents either because the know the name of the perpetrator of they don’t believe their story will be believed by authorities. According to the report, about 14% of people aged between 12 and 20 have been sexually assaulted mostly by people they know. “The abuse of young people by people in authority has been the focus of public concern,” said Daryl Higgins of the Institute, “however, sexual assault between young people at parties in dating relationshipsis often still not acknowledged.”

The Institute believes in the majority of cases when sexual assault occurs off school grounds much less attention is paid, mainly because school officials do not believe dealing with such incidents if part of their job.

Military Sexual Assaults Often Not Reported

Kaye Whitley, director of the Defense Department’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office, believes far more rape and sexual assaults occur than are actually reported. She acknowledges this problem is not merely peculiar to the military since “our civilian counterparts struggle with this as well.” A recent study by the Government Accountability Office stated bluntly the military sexual assault prevention program lacked consistent effectiveness, many local coordinators were part timers, and some commanders are not that enthusiastic about the program. Whitley’s commander refused to allow her appearance before a congressional committee investigating the problem.

Whitley challenges some aspects of the GAO report arguing it is difficult measuring the effectiveness of sexual assault programs. However, she admits some commanders are not aggressive such as posting information concerning the program in barracks. She also expressed concern how local Sexual Assault Response Coordinators(SARC) are selected or supported. Funding comes from the base rather than from a central office in Washington.

“We’re talking about changing a climate” she argues and that will take time and effort and support.

Senator Clinton Blasts Failure To Halt Sex Intimidation

Senator Hillary Clinton called for an investigation into the Pentagon’s efforts to prevent and respond to sexual assaults. “I am deeply concerned by the Pentagon’s inadequate response to sexual assaults on our troops and the administration’s unwillingness to answer questions about this important issue. She asked for the Senate armed Services Committee to hold hearings that would “allow us to identify the necessary reforms to protect our service members from sexual assault.

The GAo found that nearly half of those who alleged sexual assaults at the 14 installations visited by auditors did not report the assaults for reasons ranging from fear of harassment to a sense the command would be unresponsive. The lack of effort to ensure such conditions would be dealt with in an appropriate manner suggests failure of leadership in the Pentagon and by the president.