Washington: US Pentagon’s latest survey reported that number of sexual assault cases on service members reported in 2021 spiked to a new high of 7,249, representing a 13% increase over last year’s numbers.
The survey also mentioned that an estimated 8.4% of active duty women and 1.5% of active duty men indicated experiencing at least one incident of unwanted sexual contact.
The survey also showed that despite major efforts to address the issue of sexual assault in the military, including reforms instituted last year, women in the military services have significantly lost trust in the military to follow through on their cases or treat them with respect, reports ABC News.
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The number of service members who reported they had experienced unwanted sexual contact increased significantly, to a record 35,800.
The number of sexual assaults on service members reported in 2021 also spiked to a new high of 7,249, representing a 13% increase over last year’s numbers. The increased number of reports was due in large measure to a 25.6% increase in the number of reported incidents in the Army, a number far higher than the 9.2 % increase reported by the Navy, the 1.7% increase in the Marine Corps, and the 2.4% increase in the Air Force, the report said.
“The results are a tragic reminder of the challenges we face and the absolute need for continued leadership engagement, historic reforms that remain underway, and a focus on the latest and prevention so we can achieve the foundational change we need,” Elizabeth Foster, executive director of the Pentagon’s Office of Force Resiliency, told reporters on Thursday.
“These numbers are tragic and extremely disappointing,” she added. “On an individual level, it is devastating to conceptualize that these numbers mean that over 35,000 service members lives and careers were irrevocably changed by these crimes.”
According to the Pentagon study, 8.4% of active-duty female service members are estimated to have experienced some form of unwanted sexual contact in 2021, an increase from 6.2%, the highest percentage since data measurements began in 2006. The figure for men increased to 1.5% up from .7%, the second-highest level recorded.
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