Army Sexual Harassment/Assault Response & Prevention

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What Should I Do?

It is okay to feel emotionally drained and unsure of what to do after a sexual assault. You may want to seek medical attention to treat any possible injuries and to check for injuries you may not be able to see. These steps can help you feel safer and help you connect with people who care about your well-being:

  • Do not clean up or straighten-up where you were sexually assaulted.
  • Go somewhere you feel safe and secure.
  • Do NOT bathe, wash your hands, eat, drink, or brush your teeth.
  • Go to the hospital as soon as possible and request a Sexual Assault Forensic Exam (SAFE).

Who Should I Talk To?

Contact Your Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC)

Communication between you and a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or Victim Advocate (VA) is privileged and will not be released to others (MRE 514). Our professionals will ensure you are protected, treated with dignity and respect, and receive timely access to appropriate medical treatment. Response services are always confidential.

Find Your SARC

Contact the DoD Safe Helpline

The DoD Safe Helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is both anonymous and confidential, as well as secure. Staff members will listen to your concerns, discuss safety planning, provide information about resources and, when you are ready, connect you with local resources such as a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or Victim Advocate (VA).

Call 877-995-5247 to be connected with a trained Safe Helpline staff member.

DSN users can call Safe Helpline by dialing Call 877-995-5247.

For those unable to call toll-free or DSN, call Call 202-540-5962.

Chat with Staff Member

 

Download the Safe Helpline App for direct access to chat, text, and additional resources.

Safe Helpline App

Sexual Assault is Not Your Fault

  • Sexual assault has nothing to do with you, who you are or how you are perceived. Offenders rely on victim blaming to prevent survivors from coming forward.
  • An offender can be a current or past romantic partner and unwanted sexual contact is considered intimate partner violence. If you or someone you know is a survivor of intimate partner violence, click here for more information.  
  • Arousal is a bodily reaction. It does not mean you wanted the sexual contact to happen.
  • Sexual orientation is neither the cause nor outcome of sexual assault.
  • Sexual assault knows no gender. If you are a man who has been sexually assaulted, click here for more information.

I Want to File a Sexual Assault Report

You have two reporting options: Restricted and Unrestricted. The major difference between these reporting options is that an unrestricted report will trigger an official investigation, whereas a restricted report will not.

Restricted Reporting

Restricted reporting allows you to confidentially disclose the details of your assault to specified individuals and receive medical treatment and counseling, without triggering the official investigative process. Your conversations with a SARC or VA about the sexual assault are confidential and will not be disclosed to others including law enforcement or your chain of command. With a restricted report you can receive:

  • Medical treatment
  • Sexual Assault Forensic Exam
  • Counseling
  • Chaplain Services
  • Special Victim Counsel
  • Legal Advocacy
  • Victim Advocacy

If you decide to make a Restricted Report, you will have the opportunity to anonymously disclose suspect information to help the DoD identify serial offenders through the Catch a Serial Offender Program (CATCH). CATCH allows sexual assault victims (including service members and adult dependents) to discover if the suspect in their Restricted Report may have also assaulted another person (a "match" in the CATCH website), and, after having that knowledge, decide whether to convert the Restricted Report to Unrestricted to initiate an investigation of the serial offender suspect.

Find your SARC

Unrestricted Reporting

If you file an Unrestricted Report, you will have access to all the resources available through restricted reporting, plus be able to notify law enforcement or command so that an official investigation of the crime is initiated. Unrestricted Reporting includes:

  • Medical Treatment
  • Sexual Assault Forensic Exam
  • Counseling
  • Chaplain Services
  • Special Victim Counsel
  • Legal Advocacy
  • Victim Advocacy
  • Command Intervention
  • Official Investigation

Contact Your Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC)

Communication between you and a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or Victim Advocate (VA) is privileged and will not be released to others (MRE 514). Our professionals will ensure you are protected, treated with dignity and respect, and receive timely access to appropriate medical treatment. Response services are always confidential.

Find your SARC

Contact the DoD Safe Helpline

The DoD Safe Helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is both anonymous and confidential, as well as secure. Staff members will listen to your concerns, discuss safety planning, provide information about resources and, when you are ready, connect you with local resources such as a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or Victim Advocate (VA).

Call 877-995-5247 to be connected with a trained Safe Helpline staff member.

DSN users can call Safe Helpline by dialing Call 877-995-5247.

For those unable to call toll-free or DSN, call Call 202-540-5962.

Chat with Staff Member

Download the Safe Helpline App for direct access to chat, text, and additional resources.

Safe Helpline App