Army launches sexual assault prevention Web site
October 30, 2008
By Kelly Pate
WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Oct. 30, 2008) -- The Army has launched a new Sexual Assault Prevention Program Web site as part of its I. A.M. Strong campaign.
The acronym I. A.M. stands for Intervene, Act and Motivate. The I. A.M. Strong campaign seeks to change the culture of the Army by stamping out sexual assaults and the sexually offensive language and gestures that create an abusive environment, said Col. Jon Dahms, chief of Planning Support, Army Public Affairs.
The Web site, <a href="http://www.preventsexualassault.army.mil"target=_blank>www.preventsexualassault.army.mil</a>, is part of the Army's ongoing efforts to create a climate that eliminates incidents of sexual harassment and assault in the Army.
"We're on the offensive to stop the crime of sexual assault before it even happens," said Nathan F. Evans, Army Sexual Assault Prevention and Response deputy program mManager. "Commanders at all levels have been charged to aggressively implement their command's I. A.M. Strong prevention program."
The Web site features the new I. A.M. Strong video, "Band of Brothers and Sisters." The Web site provides information on how to prevent sexual assaults, what to do if a person has been assaulted, and training and leader tools. Other features include a scrolling list of upcoming events, training resources and Army regulations and policy.
The Army launched its I. A.M. Strong program in September 2008 to give Leaders and Soldiers the tools they need to stop sexual assaults. At the Army's sexual assault prevention summit in Alexandria, Secretary of the Army Pete Geren stressed the significance of Army values which are at the core of the sexual assault prevention program.
"American Soldiers are members of a band of brothers and sisters, bound by common values, and duty and loyalty to each other that sets them apart from society," Geren said.
Army leaders aim to put an end to sexual assault Army-wide over the next five years and to make the Army's sexual assault prevention program a model for the rest of the nation. The Army plans to change its culture through the influence of committed Army leadership and Soldiers, peer-to-peer accountability, and education and training to ensure Soldiers understand the responsibility to intervene and how to do so safely. The end product is a sustained, incident-free Army culture.
The Army plans to stop sexual harassment as well as sexual assault - neither of which has any place in the Army, Col. Dahms said.
"This is important to the Army because sexual harassment and sexual assault hurt not only individual Soldiers and civilians," Dahms said. "These incidents also negatively affect the readiness of units and organizations at all levels."
(Kelly Pate serves in Planning Support, Office of the Chief of Public Affairs.)