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Week of 9.7.07

Fact Check: Military Sexual Trauma

Review the statistics about Military Sexual Trauma


Military sexual trauma
Harassment, assault, rape and other violence.

Military sexual assault
Any unwanted physical contact of a sexual nature.

Military Rape
Unwanted vaginal, anal or oral intercourse or penetration using fingers or other objects, using force or the threat of force.

Sexual Trauma in the Armed Forces

  • Number of sexual assaults reported in 2006: 2,947
  • Number of sexual assaults by service members reported in 2006: 1,167
Sexual Trauma in the Military Reserves and the National Guard
  • 27% of men have experienced military sexual trauma
  • 60% of women have experienced military sexual trauma
  • 3.5% of men have experienced military sexual assault
  • 23% of women have experienced military sexual assault
  • 11% of women have experienced rape
  • 1.2% of men have experienced rape
  • Service branch with the highest percentage of women reporting sexual trauma: Marine Corps
  • 20% of women seeking care at VA facilities have experienced sexual trauma
  • 1% of men seeking care at VA facilities have experienced sexual trauma
  • 8.3 percentage of women report lifetime PTSD related to MST
  • More than half of the incidents took place at a military work site and during duty hours
  • The majority of the offenders in these cases were military personnel
  • Factors that increase risk of sexual assault for active duty females include presence of officers who condone or allow sexual harassment and unwanted sexual attention

Department of Defense: 2006 Annual Report on Military Services Sexual Assault [pdf]

Department of Veterans Affairs, "Military Sexual Trauma Among The Reserve Components Of The Armed Forces"

American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 2003. "Factors associated with women's risk of rape in the military environment." Sadler, Anne, et al.

For more information:

The Miles Foundation: Services and advocacy for victims of sexual and domestic violence in the military.

Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office

Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network