HomeNewsArticle Display

Feedback on Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Blog

Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Larry Spencer speaks with Airmen from the 11th Logistics Readiness Squadron on Joint Base Andrews, Md., June 6, 2013. Spencer coined four Airmen who collaborated on an idea to save the Air Force money. The Airmen found less expensive leases for distinguished visitor transport vehicles, which will save more than $10,000 per year. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Erin O’Shea)

Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Larry Spencer speaks with Airmen from the 11th Logistics Readiness Squadron on Joint Base Andrews, Md., June 6, 2013. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Erin O’Shea)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) --

In the commentary below, Air Force Vice Chief of Staff, General Larry Spencer, gives direct feedback to Airmen on comments and suggestions posted on the service’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response blog.

Since launching July 15, more than 900 comments have been posted on the blog, with more than 500 coming on the first posting.

“’We can’t fix this issue sitting in the Pentagon,’” said General Spencer in the inaugural SAPR blog post. “’We need each and every one of you to get engaged in addressing this issue… this crime, and it is a crime. We need to know exactly where you feel the issues are, so we can address them with laser focus. I need every one of you helping us find ways to ensure dignity and respect are prevailing qualities in our daily relationships.’”

Today, Spencer wants Airmen to know their voice has been heard by senior leadership and suggestions are being acted upon.  

 

Gen. Larry Spencer

Air Force Vice Chief of Staff

 

Once again, you answered the call and responded to our request to hear from you – thank you.

More than two months ago, I launched the “Every Airman Counts” campaign in an effort to communicate directly with Airmen on how best to address the issue of sexual assault prevention and response within our organization.  One of the tools we developed is a blog to stimulate discussion and for you to share your never-ending innovative suggestions, ideas, or concerns with each other and senior leaders.  Let me tell you – your senior leaders read the blog daily and we appreciate your candid comments.

As of today, we have received roughly 900 comments on the blog.  What’s more, we have had approximately 46,000 visits to the site.  What this tells me is that you care – you are taking time to read about a problem that affects us all and give us suggestions on how to fix it.

There have been a lot of great comments – too many to discuss in this article – but I felt it was appropriate to give you some feedback and to highlight some recurring themes and key take-aways senior leaders have gleaned from the blog.

Key take-aways

First, a number of you mentioned the need for more focused training at all levels, but most importantly, for commanders and front-line supervisors.  You’re also telling us we need realistic training with realistic scenarios and small group discussions for the training to be effective.  We’ve taken some initial actions on each of these suggestions and will continue to expand and intensify our efforts. 

Another issue you raised is that alcohol abuse is commonly linked to sexual assault.  We hear you and the data shows you are correct.  As a result, we have reached out to our MAJCOMs to gather best practices regarding use of alcohol in the dorms, and may explore different options to see what makes sense to implement across the Air Force. 

Next, several blog entries highlighted victim blaming as a concern.  To be clear, we cannot and will not blame the victim!  Our training efforts will ensure every Airman understands the toll this trauma exacts on victims and their families.  If you haven’t been to the blog to watch the videos of our three extremely strong survivors, I encourage you to do so – it is heart wrenching, but will truly help you understand the spectrum of trauma victims endure.  It took a lot of courage for these women to come forward and tell their stories, but they did so to help others and help our Air Force. 

Action taken

Based on your blog entries and feedback from focus groups, we have several other initiatives underway as well.  On August 1st we implemented an advanced course on how to deal with sexual assault, and have trained more than 96 OSI agents and legal representatives to date.  Additionally, we are developing a Basic Military Training Transition program where our newest Airmen will spend one-week in a classroom environment between BMT graduation and technical school.  Here they will learn about a variety of issues to include the Air Force culture and what’s expected of them as Airmen.  Finally, this month, we will share final outcomes of convicted court cases with the Air Force Times so all of our Airmen can have visibility on the final disposition of those convicted of this crime.  Additionally, synopses of sexual assault convictions from 2010 to present can be found at http://www.afjag.af.mil/sexualassaultprosecution/.

The Secretary of the Air Force, Chief of Staff, and I are fully committed to eradicating the crime of sexual assault from our Service – but we can’t do this alone.  We need each and every one of you focused on this problem. Every Airman Counts means we treat each other with dignity and respect.  Thank you again for helping us work this issue – we’re looking for “game changers” so keep those ideas coming. 

Thank you also for all you do to make our Air Force the best the world has ever seen. Airpower! 

Please continue to post your comments and concerns on the blog at http://afsapr.dodlive.mil

 

Engage

Twitter
Military and government representatives from multiple academic and intelligence communities met for the first… https://t.co/qGoWVhfR0v
Twitter
Readying the force @AETCommand hosted a study as part of a process to restructure force development and assist ca… https://t.co/WGmiQO2QvW
Twitter
Accelerating change The Air Force Weapons School Integration training approach has taken a new form. Its focus has… https://t.co/bho4Ehrhfn
Twitter
Accelerate with AFWERX @AFWERX will host its inaugural Accelerate event virtually, Dec. 7-11, 2020. The event will… https://t.co/mCEAXbw0OD
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: The title says it all. Wanna be a good leader, be a good follower. Have a fantastic Thursday, teammates! Be delibera…
Twitter
Increasing #USAF aircraft capabilities The B-1B Lancer’s expanded carriage capabilities came one step closer to fr… https://t.co/wiqhTQyESO
Twitter
RT @grandslamwing: Our Expeditionary Engineers demonstrated their Rapid Airfield Damage Repair skills during an exercise, to strengthen our…
Twitter
Welcome home! An Airman hugs a loved one at @139AW upon returning from a deployment to the @CENTCOM area of respon… https://t.co/32OrUWfD6A
Twitter
Col. (ret.) Clyde Westbrook piloted the HC-130P Combat King to recover American POWs during the Vietnam War. He rec… https://t.co/ilcucCPocS
Twitter
RT @JASDF_PAO_ENG: On Nov 19, General Izutsu had in-person meetings with General Wilsbach, Commander, PACAF and Ms. Seybolt, Deputy Under S…
Twitter
Humanitarian relief operations A Special Tactics operator loads a tactical vehicle onto a @USArmy CH-47 Chinook he… https://t.co/cveQ5G0HjE
Twitter
Update to the fleet The Kentucky @AirNatlGuard's 123rd Airlift Wing has been flying the C-130H Hercules aircraft s… https://t.co/7iHBZtTXkQ
Twitter
Air Force updates travel screening process for EFMP families #ICYMI The updates came after vital feedback from… https://t.co/JuKr3rOL98
Twitter
RT @USAF_ACC: How are you building your digital literacy? Check out the program from Digital University for @usairforce and @SpaceForceDoD
Twitter
RT @HQUSAFEAFAF: ✈️Planes in the air....Maintenance put them there! https://t.co/gtxVl4klLU
Twitter
RT @RamsteinAirBase: No airfield? No Problem. The 435th CRG enhances their ability to build expeditionary airfields on demand during exerc…
Twitter
Load 'em up! The 60th Aerial Port Squadron is the @US_TRANSCOM's primary west coast aerial port, providing global… https://t.co/MRtQdKCK7h
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,315,566
Follow Us