Our vision is to establish a national benchmark for recovery and eliminate sexual assault through empowered and engaged Airmen. To accomplish that goal, we educate, advocate and collaborate through our Sexual Assault Prevention and Response teams at all Air Force installations to respond to and stop sexual assault and its harmful effects on the Air Force.
It may be too early to judge the effectiveness of a new Department of Defense program known as “CATCH,” but several sexual assault response coordinators are already convinced of its merits. “CATCH” is short for Catch a Serial Offender, which rolled out last August for the Air Force and other military branches. Victims who have filed a restricted report can enter detailed information about an assault into a DoD database without risking the confidentiality of their restricted report.
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Team Shaw Looking for VA Volunteers
Team Shaw’s volunteer victim advocates work within the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response program to provide crucial services to individuals who experience sexual assault, such as conducting nonclinical assessments, coordinating referrals and accompanying victims to appointments including medical evaluations and investigative interviews.
The SAPR office hopes to welcome new team members to assist in this mission at a Sexual Assault VVA Course scheduled for March 9-13.
Who is eligible for SAPR support services?
Active duty members, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard members and their dependents 18 and older who are eligible for treatment in the military health system, and Air Force civilian (appropriated and non-appropriated) employees. SAPR provides support for adult sexual assault victims when the perpetrator is someone other than the victim’s spouse or same sex domestic partner.
The Family Advocacy Program manages sexual assault allegations when the alleged offender is the partner in context of a spousal relationship, same sex domestic partnership, unmarried intimate partner relationship or military dependents who are 17 years of age and younger.
What do SARCs do?
The SARC serves as the installation's primary point of contact for integrating and coordinating sexual assault victim care services for eligible recipients. Services may begin at the initial report of sexual assault and continue through disposition and resolution of issues related to the victim's health and well-being. The SARC reports directly to the installation wing commander (or equivalent) or installation vice wing commander, executing the Air Force's Sexual Assault Prevention and Response program at the installation level. SARCs assist unit commanders as necessary to ensure victims of sexual assault receive appropriate and responsive care.
How can I contact my SARC?
Option 1: Visit the DoD Safe Helpline (https://safehelpline.org/search.cfm) and locate the SARC closest to your location.
Option 2: Call your base operator and obtain the phone number for your base SARC.
Option 3: Contact the DoD Safe Helpline at 877-995-5247.
Who do I contact for support if I’m deployed to a small forward operating base with no SARC?
Contact the SARC located nearest to you. If you’re unsure where the nearest SARC is, visit the DoD Safe Helpline website (https://safehelpline.org/search.cfm) or call 877-995-5247. The nearest SARC will be able to assist you and assign a volunteer victim advocate at your location if one is available.
Can my restricted report be made unrestricted by someone else?
Your report will remain restricted and confidential. However, if another individual reports your assault to their chain of command or law enforcement, an investigation will be initiated if the case falls under the jurisdiction of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.
Can I report a sexual assault that happened prior to my military service, on TDY or on leave?
Yes, your SARC will take your report of sexual assault regardless of when or where the assault occurred. If you choose to make your report unrestricted, the SARC will help notify the appropriate law enforcement officials.
Can I report a sexual assault to a SARC from another service or base?
Yes, with the exception of Air Force civilian employees. If you are eligible for SAPR support services, then you can file a report with any DoD SARC regardless of location. However, Air Force civilian employees are currently the only Department of Defense civilian employees eligible for SAPR services, and can only receive SAPR services from Air Force SARCs and SAPR victim advocates.
How do I know my information will be protected if I make a restricted report?
SARCs and SAPR victim advocates are responsible by law and Department of Defense and Air Force Instructions to protect the confidentiality of both restricted and unrestricted reports. SAPR personnel who violate confidentiality rules are subject to the full range of disciplinary action ranging from administrative action to court-martial, depending on the status of the individual in question and the nature of the violation.
How to reporting to a SARC, a SAPR victim advocate or a volunteer victim advocate?
All three are nationally certified to support victims of sexual assault, can take both restricted and unrestricted reports of sexual assault and have confidentiality under military regulations. All can provide exceptional care and support for victims, SARCs and full time SAPR victim advocates also have additional administrative and managerial duties.
The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the the United States Air Force, or the Department of Defense, of the external Web site, or the information, products or services contained therein.
Medical services are available at your local VA Medical Center and can be accessed by contacting the Military Sexual Trauma Coordinator (or Women Veterans Program Manager). Assessment and referral for sexual trauma counseling is available at all Vet Centers. Onsite counseling is available at selected Vet Centers across the country.
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