WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Navy leaders announced March 16 the Department of Defense 2015 Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month (SAAPM) theme of "Eliminate Sexual Assault: Know your part. Do your part." The effort will focus on raising awareness and highlighting prevention of sexual violence with an emphasis on bystander intervention.
April is an opportunity to build on existing momentum to eliminate the crime of sexual assault and ensure all service members are committed to creating command climates of professionalism, dignity and respect.
"As we focus on this year's theme of 'Eliminate Sexual Assault: Know your part. Do your part', it's critical that everyone takes time to focus on the areas where they can help, through attention and intervention," said Rear Adm. Rick Snyder, director, 21st Century Sailor Office. "Sailors at every level of leadership are the ones that make this not just a successful month, but a sustained and positive campaign to identify situations that pose a risk for sexual harassment, sexual assault, and other criminal behaviors and have the social courage to safely correct harmful behavior."
In addition to making Sailors aware of SAAPM and this year's theme, commands are encouraged to organize events to highlight the awareness and prevention of sexual assault. Some of the suggested events include hanging ribbons on trees around base, hosting "Meet your SARC and victim advocate" events, organizing skits at the local base theater, and other activities to raise awareness during the month of April. Events can be coordinated with local SAPR professionals to ensure maximum visibility and participation.
"We see Sailors stepping up and helping, and we want to encourage that to continue," said Snyder. "Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month is a great opportunity for commands to show their support and focus on eliminating sexual assault."
Sailors and commands can find additional information, references and resources at www.sapr.navy.mil. The website contains turn-key information on organizing and executing SAAPM events. The website also includes resources for victims of sexual assault who want to reach out for information and support.
Sexual Assault Prevention and Response is an important effort in the 21st Century Sailor Office which consolidates programs and policies, new and existing, to maximize Sailor personal and family readiness and build resilience, enhancing the asymmetric advantage Sailors bring to the force.
For more information, go to www.Navy.mil/sapr.
For more news from Chief of Naval Personnel, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnp/.