PoliticsDaily "Sexual Assault Cases Up 64% at Military Academies"

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by mvt93, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. mvt93

    mvt93 Member

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    Sexual Assault Cases Up 64 Percent at Military Academies
    Aol Original
    David Wood


    Sexual assaults at the nation's prestigious military academies have soared, with reported cases rising 64 percent during the 2009-2010 academic year, according to a new Pentagon report.

    The actual numbers of reported cases – 25 in academic year 2008-2009 and 51 cases in 2009-2010 – may be significantly understated, the report indicated. According to a survey of cadets at the academies, fewer than one in 10 cases are actually reported. The rest go unreported because cadets fear being the object of gossip, or are uncomfortable reporting a sexual offense to academy authorities, or feel the incident is not significant enough to report.

    The rise in sexual crime comes despite concerted efforts by the Defense Department to crack down on sexual misbehavior and to encourage military members to report incidents and to seek counseling and other help -- which may in part explain the increase in incident reports.

    The Defense Department has mandated increased training on sexual harrassment and assault, not only for academy cadets but across the armed forces. One "unexpected result,'' the Pentagon study said, "is that education about a problem may enable individuals to better recognize it when it occurs. As a result, increases in surveyed incidence rates may reflect better identification of problem behaviors.''

    "Sexual harassment and assault are incompatible with our core values, degrade mission readiness and reflect poorly on military culture, Clifford L. Stanley, the Pentagon's personnel chief, said in a statement. "The department is committed to establishing a culture free of sexual harassment and assault.''

    According to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), more than 48,000 female veterans suffer from military sexual trauma, the result of sexual assault or harassment during their military service. The number of women in the military, enlisted and officer, active duty and reserve, is 1,341,727.

    The American Civil Liberties Union and the Service Women's Action Network this week sued the Pentagon and the VA to force release of data documenting how military service members' complaints were handled.

    The ACLU said one in three women are sexually assaulted during their service, but the military "has failed systematically to investigate complains, punish perpetrators and treat the health conditions suffered by the assaulted women. According to the ACLU, only 8 percent of alleged military perpetrators are prosecuted.

    "The U.S. cannot continue to turn a blind eye to these crimes,'' the ACLU said in a statement. "We filed this lawsuit because the extent to which the government addresses, ignores, and hides military sexual trauma and its effects must be known. Only then can we do right by those who have been assaulted in uniform.''



    http://www.politicsdaily.com/2010/12/15/sexual-assault-cases-up-64-percent-at-military-academies/

    I came across this and thought it was interesting. I've done overnights at USMA and USNA and I have asked female cadets/mids about this topic. All of them have said that their fellow male cadets/mids are like brothers. They explained that in the majority of cases, the female put herself in a bad situation (ie getting drunk, flirting).

    I take news with a grain of salt but I was wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this article. Feedback from current cadets/mids would be highly appreciated.
     
  2. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Let's see roughly 25 in ~14000 people is <0.2% and 50 is 0.35%. If that's a tenth of the real number, then the real number is 3.5%. I really don't trust this 10% reporting number, I don't really believe it. I'd like to see how they got that. Otherwise, the reports are accounting for a small fraction of people. Clearly a massive problem.
     
  3. vampsoul

    vampsoul Candidate

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    I don't think the number of incidents are going up. I think the education for how to report incidents is better and women feel more able to report them rather than keep quiet about it.
     
  4. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Hornet's numbers are definitely much more realistic. Again; we're dealing with "Statistics". Which can say just about anything you want them to. But stats aside, am I missing something in the "Math" department? (I thought I was pretty good with may).

    If you have 25 of something. 100% of that would be 25. So, if there were 25, and it went up to 51, that would be more than 100%. Yet, the article says it went up 64%??? Where does the 64% come from? I'm sure I am overlooking something simple here. But as for stats; you could have 1 case in a million; have it go to 2 the next year; and someone could argue that it went up 100%.

    Hornet's numbers are definitely a more realistic way of presenting the issue. While any incidents should be taken seriously; reporting a 64% increase is typical misrepresentation in the media. It happens all the time and is designed to create a shock factor.
     
  5. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    This was something that came up a couple years ago while I was at USAFA. USAFA had the highest reporting rates of the Academies and was being scorned by the local paper. In reality, USAFA was (at the time) the model for providing an environment for people to come forth more comfortably. We had the highest rate, but I guarantee you it wasn't due to more assaults, but to a better atmosphere in reporting.

    As CC hinted towards, the statistics for this are very fuzzy with a lot of uncertainty. He mentioned a good paradox which is commonly found medically. A new treatment increases risk by reducing the probability of survival from 99.9% to 99.8%. But gasp! you risk of dying has doubled from 0.1% to 0.2%!!! It must be horrible.

    Again, I don't trust the new article and the ACLU on this one.
     
  6. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Off topic, but I find this thread ironical when there is another one going regarding women in combat.

    On one thread it is let women be a part of the action as equals, and ignore things like this occur. On this thread it is being acknowledged that it does happen, but ignore how it impacts the military.
     
  7. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Pima, this one is focused on the Academies though. They mention the military as a whole, but we are referring to the Academies. Apples and oranges, IMO, to the women in combat roles thread. My beef here is the overhype on sexual assault at military academies. The statistics were poorly used to blow smoke.
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I agree this was blowing smoke.
     
  9. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    And only 3 of them.
     
  10. mvt93

    mvt93 Member

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    Thanks everybody. Just wanted the opinions of people who are closer to the academies/military then your average civilian. My Contemporary Issues teacher said this should be an interesting topic for me considering I'm going to an academy but I told him that wasn't the atmosphere I picked up on at all. I was just a little baffled at how this seemed to be such a big issue (according to the news report), yet that wasn't the impression I got at all while visiting.
     
  11. Maximus

    Maximus Member

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    Trust me on this, I'm sure you can quadruple those numbers at non service academy college! Tell your Contemporary Issues teachers this is just another smoke screen blown up by the ACLU and you'd be safer at a SA by about a million times. lol
     

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