DOD Reaches Out to Victims of Sexual Assault

The Pentagon launched the Safe Helpline, a free, anonymous, and confidential resource to support victims of sexual assault. “The underreporting of sexual assault poses a serious challenge to military readiness,” said Clifford Stanley, undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness. “We believe the Safe Helpline will provide [Defense Department] sexual assault victims with a variety of support outlets, which will lead victims to report sexual assault, seek needed information, and receive care.” The helpline is open 24 hours a day, every day. There are three access options: a Website with a secure instant messaging system, a toll-free hotline to speak with staff or be transferred to an installation-based sexual assault response coordinator, and use of one’s mobile communications device to text one’s location to receive automated contact information for a local SARC. (DOD release, including detailed contact information for seeking assistance)