(COLORADO SPRINGS) — The Department of Defense (DOD) released its annual report on sexual harassment and violence at military service academies showing record-high levels since the DOD started tracking reports in 2006.
Lieutenant General Richard M. Clark, Superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy responded to the report with condemnation of the increase and outlined steps the academy was taking to “create an environment where everyone is safe from physical and emotional harm.”
“Today’s report identifies an unacceptable increase in unwanted sexual contact of our cadets,” said Lt. Gen. Richard M. Clark, United States Air Force Academy Superintendent. “There is nothing that erodes trust and tears down teams faster than sexual harassment and violence. As Warfighters, this impacts the mission and our readiness. We need a culture reset.”
The U.S. Air Force Academy said it has implemented Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) training over the course of a cadet’s four years at the academy which begins during pre-admission training and continues through commissioning. The academy will evaluate existing training while also implementing the recommendations of the DOD’s Independent Review Commission.
“Throughout the year, we will continuously evaluate and adjust to find solutions that work,” said Clark. “The landscape of this issue has evolved and changed over the years requiring us to change our approach and refresh our tools.”