Back to top

By Duty Status

The Department works to ensure that every survivor of sexual assault is treated with the sensitivity they deserve, the privacy they prefer, and the responsive support they need. Reporting is encouraged - either a restricted or unrestricted report - because reporting this crime is essential to deliver care and hold offenders appropriately accountable. Restricted reports are confidential but not anonymous, and unrestricted reports are shared with the commander in the reporting location and investigated by Military Criminal Investigation Organization (MCIO).

Whether you are an Active Duty, Reserve Component, or Transitioning Service Member, a Veteran, DoD Civilian, adult DoD Dependent, DoD Contractor, find information and resources designed to meet the unique needs of a military victim of sexual assault below.

If you are not affiliated with the military, resources and assistance may be available to you through the National Sexual Assault Hotline (NSAH).

Active duty Service members, National Guard (NG) members, and Reserve Component (RC) members are eligible to receive SAPR advocacy services from a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA) regardless of whether the assault took place while on active duty, prior to enlistment or commissioning, or while performing inactive duty training. Service members of the active duty component, NG, and RC are eligible to file either a restricted or unrestricted report.

A SARC or SAPR VA addresses safety needs, explains the reporting options, services available, and assists with navigating the military criminal justice process. SARCs and SAPR VAs offer expertise to prepare victims for the road ahead and will advocate on behalf of a victim along the way. They provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired. Find additional information regarding the responsibilities of SARCs and SAPR VAs in DoD Directive 6495.01.

Also, in support of a victim of sexual assault who files an unrestricted report, a Case Management Group (CMG) is convened with the responsibility of ensuring the victim receives the care they deserve and are made aware of the investigative and legal proceedings.

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to active Service members:

  • Reporting Options - Restricted reports are confidential but not anonymous, and unrestricted reports are shared with the commander in the reporting location and investigated by Military Criminal Investigation Organization (MCIO). Learn more about the reporting options here.
  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • Special Victims' Counsel (SVC) / Victims' Legal Counsel (VLC) - Each of the Services provides either an SVC or VLC; these lawyers are experienced trial attorneys. They understand the legal process and are able to guide victims through the judicial process. Find links to the Services’ SVC/VLC programs here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victim’s rights.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.
  • Expedited Transfer - Service members who have been the victim of sexual assault and have filed an Unrestricted Report have the option to request an expedited transfer from their unit and/or installation. Find information on Expedited Transfer policy within DoD Instruction 6495.02, here.

Additional Resources

The Department provides full SAPR support to National Guard (NG) and Reserve Component members who are sexually assaulted when performing active service, as defined in section 101(d)(3) of Title 10, United States Code, and inactive duty training. If reporting a sexual assault that occurred prior to or while not performing active service or inactive training, NG and Reserve Component members will be eligible to receive limited SAPR support services from a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) and a SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA) and are eligible to file a restricted or unrestricted report.

A SARC or SAPR VA addresses safety needs, explains the reporting options, services available, and assists with navigating the military criminal justice process. SARCs and SAPR VAs offer expertise to prepare victims for the road ahead and will advocate on behalf of a victim along the way. They provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired. Find additional information regarding the responsibilities of SARCs and SAPR VAs in DoD Directive 6495.01.

Also, in support of a victim of sexual assault who files an unrestricted report, a Case Management Group (CMG) is convened with the responsibility of ensuring the victim receives the care they deserve and are made aware of the investigative and legal proceedings.

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to active Service members:

  • Reporting Options - Restricted reports are confidential but not anonymous, and unrestricted reports are shared with the commander in the reporting location and investigated by Military Criminal Investigation Organization (MCIO). Learn more about the reporting options here.
  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • Special Victims Counsel (SVC) / Victim's Legal Counsel (VLC) - Each of the Services provides either an SVC or VLC; these lawyers are experienced trial attorneys. They understand the legal process and are able to guide victims through the judicial process. Find links to the Services' SVC/VLC programs here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victim's rights.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.
  • Expedited Transfer - Service members who have been the victim of sexual assault and have filed an Unrestricted Report have the option to request an expedited transfer from their unit and/or installation. Find information on Expedited Transfer policy within DoD Instruction 6495.02, here.

Additional Resources

A Transitioning Service Member (TSM) is an individual separating or retiring from the U.S. Armed Forces who is within 12 months of separation or within 24 months of retirement. The Department of Defense (DoD) anticipates a substantial increase in the number of Service members transitioning out of the military in the coming years.

Similar to active duty Service members, TSMs are eligible to receive SAPR advocacy services from a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA) regardless of whether the assault took place while on active duty, prior to enlistment or commissioning, while on "transitioning" status, or performing inactive duty training. TSMs are eligible to file either a restricted or unrestricted report.

A SARC or SAPR VA addresses safety needs, explains the reporting options, services available, and assists with navigating the military criminal justice process. SARCs and SAPR VAs offer expertise to prepare victims for the road ahead and will advocate on behalf of a victim along the way. They provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired. Find additional information regarding the responsibilities of SARCs and SAPR VAs in DoD Directive 6495.01.

Also, in support of a victim of sexual assault who files an unrestricted report, a Case Management Group (CMG) is convened with the responsibility of ensuring the victim receives the care they deserve and are made aware of the investigative and legal proceedings.

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to TSMs:

  • Reporting Options - Restricted reports are confidential but not anonymous, and unrestricted reports are shared with the commander in the reporting location and Military Criminal Investigation Organization (MCIO). Learn more about the reporting options here.
  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • Special Victims' Counsel (SVC) / Victims' Legal Counsel (VLC) - Each of the Services provides either an SVC or VLC; these lawyers are experienced trial attorneys. They understand the legal process and are able to guide victims as a perpetrator is brought to trial. Find links to the Services' SVC/VLC programs here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victim's rights.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.
  • Expedited Transfer - Service members who have been the victim of sexual assault and have filed an Unrestricted Report have the option to request an expedited transfer from their unit and/or installation. Find information on Expedited Transfer policy within DoD Instruction 6495.02, here.

Additional Resources

Although not covered by Department of Defense policy, a Veteran suffering from Military Sexual Trauma (MST) can find assistance and resources through the Department of Veterans Affairs, available here.

The VA recently announced expanded eligibility for Veterans in need of mental health care due to sexual assault or sexual harassment that occurred during their military service. This expansion, which primarily pertains to Reservists and National Guard members participating in weekend drill, gives the authority to offer Veterans the appropriate care and services needed to treat conditions resulting from MST that occurred during a period of inactive duty training. Read the full VA press release here.

Additional resources and assistance can be found at SafeHelpline.org.

The Department of Defense is committed to responding to the needs of all members of the DoD community, and that is certainly true of the many dedicated civilians who support our mission.

Eligibility for DoD civilians:

  • Non-military individuals who are employed by the Department and a victim of sexual assault are eligible for limited emergency care medical services at a military treatment facility (MTF), unless that individual is otherwise eligible as a Service member or TRICARE beneficiary of the military health system to receive treatment in a MTF at no cost.
  • DoD civilian employees and their family dependents, 18 years of age and older, when they are stationed or performing duties outside of the continental United States (OCONUS), and eligible for treatment in the military healthcare system (MHS) at military installations or facilities continental United States (CONUS).

DoD provided services include:

  • Unrestricted report - DoD civilian employees and their family dependents 18 years of age and older may only utilize the unrestricted reporting option if reporting through the Department. Alternately, civilian employees and their adult dependents may be able to utilize the confidential reporting options as defined by local and state jurisdictions. For assistance with finding these resources, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline.
  • Assistance of a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA)
    • If the Military Criminal Investigative Organization (MCIO) has jurisdiction over a DoD civilian's unrestricted report of sexual assault, a DoD or military Service SARC or SAPR VA can provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired.
    • If the MCIO does not have jurisdiction, rather, the case falls to local law enforcement, a DoD SARC or SAPR VA can help by identifying the appropriate referrals to the civilian community for assistance and/or while undergoing emergency care OCONUS.

SARCs and SAPR VAs can facilitate getting professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired. Find additional information regarding the responsibilities of SARCs and SAPR VAs in DoD Directive 6495.01.

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to DoD civilians:

  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline - Local community resources can be found through the National Sexual Assault Hotline, here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victim's rights.
  • Legal Support for DoD Civilians - Although DoD civilians are not eligible for Special Victims' Counsel / Victims' Legal Counsel Services, they can retain their own legal counsel for military judicial proceedings.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.

Additional Resources

The Department of Defense is committed to responding to the needs of all members of the DoD community, including extended members of the community.

Eligibility for dependents of a DoD civilian employee or military Service member:

DoD provided services include:

  • Adult dependents of military personnel - Sexual assault response services are provided to military dependents, 18 years of age and older who are eligible for treatment in the military healthcare system (MHS), at installations in the continental United States (CONUS) and outside of the continental United States (OCONUS), and who were victims of sexual assault perpetrated by someone other than a spouse or intimate partner.
  • Adult dependents of civilian employees - For these individuals who are victims of sexual assault, only limited emergency care medical services at a military treatment facility (MTF) are provided, unless that individual is otherwise eligible as a Service member or TRICARE beneficiary of the MHS to receive treatment in a MTF at no cost.
  • Reporting Options -
  • The Family Advocacy Program (FAP), consistent with DoDD 6400.1 (Reference (o)) and DoD Instruction (DoDI) 6400.06 (Reference (p)) covers adult military dependent sexual assault victims who are assaulted by a spouse or intimate partner and military dependent sexual assault victims who are 17 years of age and younger. The installation Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) and the installation Family Advocacy Program and domestic violence intervention and prevention staff shall direct coordination when a sexual assault occurs within a domestic relationship or involves child abuse.
  • Assistance of a SARC or SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA)
    • If the Military Criminal Investigative Organization (MCIO) has jurisdiction over a DoD dependent's unrestricted report of sexual assault, a DoD or military Service SARC or SAPR VA can provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired.
    • If the MCIO does not have jurisdiction, rather, the case falls to local law enforcement, a DoD SARC or SAPR VA can help by identifying the appropriate referrals to the civilian community for assistance and/or while undergoing emergency care OCONUS.

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to dependents of Department military or civilian personnel:

  • Reporting Options - Restricted reports are confidential but not anonymous, and unrestricted reports are shared with the commander in the reporting location and Military Criminal Investigation Organization (MCIO). Learn more about the reporting options here.
  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline - Local community resources can be found through the National Sexual Assault Hotline, here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victim's rights.
  • Legal Support for DoD Dependents - Although DoD dependents are not eligible for Special Victims' Counsel / Victims' Legal Counsel Services, they may retain their own legal counsel for military judicial proceedings.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.

Additional Resources

The Department is committed to responding to the needs of all members of the DoD community, including contractors - personnel of a contracted organization to the Department of Defense.

Eligibility for a DoD contractor:

DoD provided services include:

In addition to assigning a SARC and/or SAPR VA, the Department makes the following SAPR services or policy support available to Department contracted personnel:

  • U.S. citizen DoD contractor personnel who experience a sexual assault are eligible for DoD services when they are authorized to accompany the Armed Forces in a contingency operation outside of the continental United States (OCONUS), and their U.S. citizen employees.
  • Additional medical services may be provided to contractors covered under Department of Defense Instruction 6495.02 in accordance with DoDI 3020.41 (Reference (q)) as applicable.
  • Non-military individuals who are contractors for the Department of Defense and a victim of sexual assault are eligible for limited emergency care medical services at a military treatment facility (MTF), unless that individual is otherwise eligible as a Service member or TRICARE beneficiary of the military health system (MHS) to receive treatment in a MTF at no cost.
  • Unrestricted report - DoD contractors may only file an unrestricted report.
  • Assistance of a SARC or SAPR Victim Advocate (SAPR VA)
    • If the Military Criminal Investigative Organization (MCIO) has jurisdiction over a DoD contractor's unrestricted report of sexual assault, a DoD or military Service SARC or SAPR VA can provide professional assistance with obtaining medical care, counseling services, legal and spiritual support, and obtaining off-base resources, if so desired.
    • If the MCIO does not have jurisdiction, rather, the case falls to local law enforcement, a DoD SARC or SAPR VA can help by identifying the appropriate referrals to the civilian community for assistance and/or while undergoing emergency care OCONUS.
  • DoD Safe Helpline - Free, anonymous, confidential and available 24/7 worldwide call, text and chat helpline for members of the DoD community. Safe Helpline has up-to-date contact information for resources including SARCs, SAPR VAs, Chaplains, Special Victims' Counsel/Victims' Legal Counsel, Medical Personnel, and Military Police. Access the Safe Helpline here.
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline - Local community resources can be found through the National Sexual Assault Hotline, here.
  • Victims' Bill of Rights - The Department guarantees a victims' rights.
  • Legal Support for DoD Contractors - Although DoD contractors are not eligible for Special Victims' Counsel / Victims' Legal Counsel Services, they may retain their own legal counsel for military judicial proceedings.
  • Victim/Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) - The VWAP helps give victims a voice and keeps them informed of the status of the investigation and prosecution. Learn more about the VWAP program here.

Additional Resources