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Air Force rolls out new sexual assault, response Web site
To reinforce the Air Force’s commitment to eliminating incidents of sexual assault, officials here have debuted a new Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Web site to raise awareness and provide prevention training, education, and victim advocacy.
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New Air Force Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Web site

Posted 7/10/2009   Updated 7/10/2009 Email story   Print story

    


by Staff Sgt. Steve Grever
Air Force Personnel Center Public Affairs


7/10/2009 - RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- To reinforce the Air Force's commitment to eliminating incidents of sexual assault, officials here have debuted a new Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Web site to raise awareness and provide prevention training, education, and victim advocacy.

"Sexual assault is absolutely inconsistent with our core values and it has no place in our Air Force; in a deployed context, at or anywhere in between," said Secretary of the Air Force Michael B. Donley.

The new SAPR Web site provides prevention and awareness information and recommendations that may prove useful in reducing and eliminating sexual assaults in the Air Force, said Lawna Swellander, the Air Force's sexual assault prevention and response operations chief.

"Eventually, the Web site will contain informational video spots that highlight ways in which members can intervene as bystanders to help others from becoming victims of sexual assault," Mrs. Swellander said. "However, the primary focus of our new website is to serve as a resource for anyone who is interested in learning more about what the Air Force is doing to combat sexual assault and provide comprehensive listings of available resources."

The Web site contains a range of material, including definitions and policy, general information to victims and the public, and discusses the availability of medical treatment, advocacy, and referral services with contact lists for the proper agencies that provide critical services.

The site will also include contacts for local sexual assault response coordinators and links to military and civilian organizations like the Department of Defense SAPR Program and Military OneSource. It will also contain current policies and Air Force Instructions as well as photos, news articles, and public service announcements.

The Air Force SAPR Program is focusing their efforts on the primary levels of prevention that work to stop sexual assaults before they occur.

"The key to prevention is for all Airmen to be engaged and committed to stopping these crimes before they occur by intervening when they witness situations or circumstances that lead to sexual assault," said Carl Buchanan, Air Force SAPR program manager.

While prevention has been included in the formal Air Force SAPR Program since it began in 2005, Mr. Buchanan said the new initiative concentrates extensively on educating Airmen and caring for victims of sexual assault.

"To shift to a full-scale prevention approach requires consistent and continuing education and training. It also requires emphasizing standards and values by leadership as well as a consistent, visible support for victims. Deterrence and holding perpetrators accountable is represented by our well-trained investigators, prosecutors, and commanders," he said.

From the launch of the official Air Force SAPR Program, Air Force leadership has dedicated full-time resources for SARCs, enhanced collaboration between first-responder communities, developed career-stream learning, continued partnerships with civilian subject matter experts, and released supportive campaign messaging to enhance the well being of all Airmen.

"The United States Air Force does not tolerate sexual assault," said Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Norton A. Schwartz. "Sexual assault is criminal conduct that falls well short of the standards America expects of its men and women in uniform. The Air Force is dedicated to eliminating sexual assault by fostering a culture of prevention, providing education and training, response capability, victim support, reporting procedures, and accountability that enhances the safety and well-being of all its members."

For more information, visit the new SAPR Web site at http://www.afpc.randolph.af.mil/library/sapr/index.asp or call the Air Force SAPR Program Office at 210-565-4448.



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