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Sexual Violence Support & Experiences Study (SVSES)

Sexual Violence Support & Experiences Study

Study Open Now
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What is the SVSES? ​

The SVSES will allow the DoD to learn directly from Service members about their experiences with sexual violence, and, specifically, sexual assault. The surveys are completely confidential and ask questions about Service member satisfaction with support services, aspects of the military justice process, and questions about Service member health, well-being, and career progression.

The study is sponsored by the DoD Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office within the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness.

In order to continue improving the military’s support services and accountability processes, it’s important to hear from Service members. Traditionally, OPA has collected feedback from Service members at a single point in time. However, we know that perceptions and experiences may change over time; that’s why the SVSES is a continuous effort. Service members who join the study will take a 30-minute initial survey followed by a series of less than 10-minute follow-up surveys.

Who Can Participate?

The SVSES is open to all members of the Active and Reserve components who have experienced sexual assault in the military. Service members can join the study at any time.

Why Should I Take the Survey? ​

Data from the SVSES will provide DoD policy offices and Service branch leaders with information about the impact of sexual assault on Service members and inform ways to improve Sexual Assault Prevention and Response programs and policies.​

How can I take the survey?​

To participate in the SVSES, please visit www.surveysdrc.com/svses.

SVSES Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Who Can Participate? ​

Any Active or Reserve component Service member who has experienced sexual assault or sexual violence while serving in the military, regardless of whether you reported the experience to military authorities.​

How do I join the study? How do I complete the survey?​

To participate in the SVSES, please visit www.surveysdrc.com/svses.

Some Service members may receive an email inviting them to join the study. Invitation emails will be sent to individuals who previously made an unrestricted sexual assault report to military authorities and to individuals who previously indicated interest in learning more about the SVSES.

How is my identity protected? Will my answers be kept private? ​

Your responses will be kept private to the extent permitted by law. OPA has obtained a federal Certificate of Confidentiality for the SVSES, the strongest privacy assurance available. The Certificate is provided by the National Institutes for Health and protects against attempts to compel the disclosure of data in administrative, legislative, or other investigative proceedings (e.g., a subpoena).

How will my responses be used?​

DoD and Service Sexual Assault Prevention and Response leadership will be able to use information from the SVSES to inform improvements to support services survivors receive and the processes survivors go through to seek accountability.

Do I have to take every survey?​

No, you do not need to take every survey. You can skip any follow-up survey. You will remain in the study until you withdraw from the study.

Can I withdraw from the study? ​

If you wish to withdraw from the study, please notify the Survey Processing Center by sending an e-mail to SVSES-Survey@mail.mil or call: 1-800-881-5307.