Army Sexual Harassment/Assault Response & Prevention

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Sexual harassment falls within a continuum of intolerable, unprofessional behaviors that may increase the likelihood of sexual assault. Sexual Harassment is a criminal offense under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, as defined in Article 134. There is a clear correlation between sexual harassment and sexual assault. Attitudes that allow or enable forms of harassment, beginning with hazing and bullying, can lead to more egregious behaviors and progress into sexual harassment/assault.

Continuum of Harm

What Should I Do?

You should be able to feel comfortable and secure in your workplace or learning institution. The person harassing you can be any gender and could be a leader (including indirect supervisor), another Soldier, or a coworker. If you are being sexually harassed, it is not your fault. If you are ready to file a complaint, we can help you navigate the process.

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It’s Sexual Harassment if Someone:

  • Implies you can advance professionally if you trade sexual favors.
  • Implies you will lose your job or that your career will suffer if you do not trade sexual favors.
  • Makes sexual or crude jokes referring to sexual acts or sexual orientation.
  • Touches you or makes unwanted physical contact.
  • Makes unwelcome sexual advances.
  • Discusses sexual relations/stories/fantasies in the workplace.
  • Shares sexually explicit photos, emails, or text messages.
  • Gossips about your romantic history or sexual orientation.

Who Should I Talk To?

The process for filing a complaint may feel daunting, but we are here to help you through it. When you are ready to talk, there are people ready to help you and support you. Know that you have options. The most important thing is that you find what works for you. If you want immediate, confidential help call 877-995-5247 to be connected with a trained Safe Helpline staff member.

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

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

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How do I File a Sexual Harassment Complaint

I am a Soldier

Soldiers can file a formal complaint with a BDE SARC or lead SARC. As defined in 10 USC 1561, sexual harassment means any of the following:

  • Conduct that—
    • Involves unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and deliberate or repeated offensive comments or gestures of a sexual nature when—
      –submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a person’s job, pay, or career;
      –submission to or rejection of such conduct by a person is used as a basis for career or employment decisions affecting that person; or
      –such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment; and
    • Is so severe or pervasive that a reasonable person would perceive, and the victim does perceive, the environment as hostile or offensive.
  • Any use or condonation, by any person in a supervisory or command position, of any form of sexual behavior to control, influence, or affect the career, pay, or job of a member of the armed forces or a civilian employee of the Department of Defense.
  • Any deliberate or repeated unwelcome verbal comment or gesture of a sexual nature by any member of the armed forces or civilian employee of the Department of Defense.

Sexual harassment, as defined in Article 134, is a criminal offense under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

I am an Army Civilian

Army Civilians who wish to file a Sexual Harassment complaint must contact their local EEO office for assistance within 45 calendar days of the alleged discriminatory act. Consult AR 690-600 , Equal Employment Opportunity Discrimination Complaints, Chapter 3, Section IV, Para 3-11 for additional information.

Note: If sexual harassment is one of the claims raised and the Civilian employee is directly supervised by a military officer of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps; they will be advised that there are two statutes applicable to him or her (that is, Title VII and 10 USC, Section 1561) and that processes established under those statutes can be used simultaneously. They will be informed of the point of contact designated by the commander to receive 10 USC, Section 1561 complaints and that he or she must contact this individual in order to file a complaint under 10 USC, Section 1561. The EEO counseling shall then continue with procedures established under 29 CFR, Part 1614 and Army EEO processing guidelines.