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Training and Education

Navy Leadership Focuses On SAAPM

Sexual assault prevention and awareness month is a top priority

Sexual assault. If that phrase makes you uncomfortable, it should.

April has been designated as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, yet as Sailors we need to maintain a year-round vigilance against one of the biggest threats facing our Navy.

You may have often thought "It won't happen to me," but have you ever asked yourself "Am I capable of committing such a horrible act?" That's a troubling thought, to be sure, but our very ranks unfortunately contain just such people - not the qualities of a true Shipmate.

It all begins with a mirror. Think about it: as you're getting ready to begin the day, perhaps in front of the bathroom mirror, take an extra second and look at the Sailor standing there. Would that Sailor ever do such a thing? Would such a thing ever happen to that Sailor? A knee-jerk reply of "No" would undoubtedly be most of our responses. Now ask yourself if that Sailor would know how to step in and help a Shipmate from becoming a victim. Would that Sailor know how to properly report an incident?

Take full advantage of this month's highlighted training, lectures, displays, opportunities for discussion and learning. Know the support network available in your chain of command, and more importantly, such avenues as your local Fleet and Family Support Center, or the Safeline website.

Think about it: if we all held that Sailor in the mirror to the highest standards - serving with a true sense of our core values, then that Sailor would easily become the Shipmate needed to defeat sexual assault in our Navy once and for all.