May 14 2021 Despite the U.S. military’s efforts to restrict personnel activity and travel for most of 2020, the number of reported sexual assaults in that year has barely decreased, comparable to the 2019 total, according to a Pentagon report released Wednesday.
According to the annual report released by the U.S. Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response, the agency received 7,816 reports of sexual assault in 2020, roughly the same as the 7,825 reported in 2019.
But the data “flattened” the growth curve of the past few years. Reported sexual assaults within the U.S. military in 2019 are up 3 percent from the previous year, and up 13 percent in 2018.
Data show that the number of reported sexual assaults in different U.S. military services in 2020 has increased or decreased. Among them, both the Navy and Marine Corps are higher than the previous year, while the Air Force and Army are lower than the previous year.
The report shows that rape as a percentage of all sexual assaults decreased to 13 per cent from 15 per cent the previous year, serious sexual assaults accounted for 37 per cent, slightly higher than the previous year, and inappropriate sexual contact accounted for 43 per cent, slightly lower than the previous year.
In all cases of sexual assault, 81 per cent of the victims were women and 19 per cent were men;
The Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response says there are often far fewer reported incidents of sexual assault than actually occurred, sometimes about 75 percent less. It is not clear to what extent the various restrictive measures under the coronavirus outbreak affect victims’ reporting of sexual assaults.