History
Minnesota National Guard
Sexual Assault
Prevention and Response Program
Sexual Assault Awareness

Members of the Minnesota National Guard are not immune to sexual harassment or assault. Sexual assault is a crime and a problem that violates everything we in the Minnesota Army and Air National Guard stand for.

The fight against sexual assault and sexual harassment is one of our priorities and we are working not only to combat this problem in our force, but also to bring perpetrators to justice.

Since January 2011, the adjutant general has authorized five separations from military service; permanently withdrawn the federal recognition of three commissioned officers; approved multiple administrative rank reductions and generated numerous permanent letters of reprimand and non-judicial punishment in cases of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Changes to the Minnesota Code of Military Justice in 2013 allow the adjutant general to convene a court martial to prosecute offenders when their actions are not under local civilian jurisdiction.

The message is clear for both victims and perpetrators of sexual crimes: The Minnesota National Guard takes all reports of sexual assault and sexual harassment seriously and we will investigate, prosecute and punish those who commit these crimes.

Through rigorous bystander intervention training, victim advocates in every unit and soldier and airman stand-downs, the Minnesota National Guard is working to bolster a supportive culture throughout our organization. We demand that our Soldiers and Airmen live up to the core values of military service. We hold each Soldier and Airman accountable for their actions and insist that our members intervene when they encounter a situation that could lead to sexual violence.

For those who have survived sexual assault, the Minnesota National Guard coordinates numerous community resources such as mental health counseling, financial assistance and advocacy throughout the healing process.

Minnesota Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program

The SAPR program is a victim focused program which responds to all sexual assault reports with care, concern, and confidentiality.  Our goal is to provide a safe means for victims of sexual assault to report the assault with or without triggering an investigation, and most of all receive access to the medical services needed to heal from any physical, mental, or emotional trauma. 

What is Sexual Assault?
Sexual Assault is a crime. Sexual assault is defined as intentional sexual contact, characterized by use of force, physical threat or abuse of authority, or when the victim does not or cannot consent. Consent should not be deemed or construed to mean the failure by the victim to offer physical resistance. Additionally, consent is not given when a person uses force, threat of force, coercion or when the victim is asleep, incapacitated, or unconscious. Sexual assault includes rape, nonconsensual sodomy (oral or anal sex), indecent assault (unwanted and inappropriate sexual contact or fondling), or attempts to commits these acts. Sexual assault can occur without regard to gender, spousal relationship, or age of victim.  As mentioned in the definition, the attacker does not have to use physical force to commit a sexual assault. The person may use intimidation or threats to make someone feel he or she can’t say no. Sexual assault can occur when someone is too drunk, drugged, or unconscious to agree to sexual contact.

Reality of Sexual Assault

According to a 2008 report, women serving in the military today are “more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than to be killed by enemy fire.” In March 2009, a report by CBS news indicated one in three female soldiers will experience sexual assault in the military compared to one in six women in the civilian population. That same year, the Pentagon released a report stating more than 2,900 cases of sexual assaults were reported, up nearly 9 per-cent from the previous year. The Pentagon also acknowledged that 80 percent of rapes are never reported – making it the most under-documented crime in the military. Although the above mentioned information references female soldiers, sexual assault is not specific to the female gender. In a 2005 report in the Psychiatric Times, statistics indicated three percent of males have experienced sexual assault while serving in the military. 

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