Congresswoman Jackie Speier, Chairwoman of the House Armed Services Military Personnel Subcommittee, released the following statement in response to the Department of Defense’s new report on Sexual Harassment and Violence at our Military Service Academies.

“Americans have an expectation that our military service academies attract the best and brightest but this report suggests that their academic and athletic success does not equate to instilling respect and honor, the hallmarks of American military service. Alarm bells should be going off at our Academies, the DoD, and Congress. Clearly what is being done to address sexual assault in our academies is not only not working, it has allowed assault rates to increase a staggering 47%. A record 15.8% of women and 2.4% of men experienced unwanted sexual contact in the past year. Half of the women attending the academies reported being sexually harassed in the 2017-2018 school year.

This report also indicates that our future leaders aren’t being prepared to help stamp out sexual assault in our armed forces but will in fact perpetuate and worsen this scourge. Our service academies must lead the charge in protecting the dignity and respect of young men and women.

In the coming days, I will be calling on the heads of our academies to come to Washington to meet with me and explain how they will be rethinking and redoubling their efforts to address this horrendous and worsening problem.”

A copy of the report can be found here.