Navy revamps sexual assault training

U.S. Navy

The Navy has instituted new measures that require every service member to undergo anti-sexual assault training by the end of the year, according to Federal News Radio.

Under the program, known as Sexual Assault Prevention and Response, specialized teams will visit more than 100 sites to provide training, Navy officials said.

The initiative will include two separate programs -- one designed for high-ranking officers and another for lower-level personnel. The Navy leaders must take the training by Sept. 30 and then help their subordinates complete the program by Dec. 31.

The announcement comes amid increased scrutiny on sexual assault in the military. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has led a campaign in the past several months to raise awareness of the problem and the Pentagon has launched initiatives to prevent and respond to sexual assault and harassment.

The Pentagon reported 3,191 cases of sexual assault in 2011, a slight increase from 2010. Of those incidents, 582 involved Navy personnel.

The service, which hired outside contractors to help design and implement the training program, will focus on encouraging third-party bystanders to intervene in situations when sexual assault could occur.

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