Today's blog post is from Dr. Christine Altendorf, director, U.S. Army Sexual Harassment Assault Response Prevention (SHARP) Program.
My May/June blog post is a bit long but I'm covering some important topics -- Training, SHARP Resource Centers, Policies, POTUS Report and Data Quality -- so please keep reading!
We started two more sessions of the SHARP Academy (8-12 week course for full time SARCs/VAs/Trainers/Program Managers) at Ft. Belvoir and intend to have two more this FY. We will then begin transitioning the Academy and other SHARP training to TRADOC. Speaking of training, we have heard over and over (through surveys, focus groups, IG reports), that we need to mix it up a bit and that you think it gets old and boring. Although, the HQ staff has been very focused on the Academy, we have updated the SHARP Annual Unit Refresher Training (URT). The revised URT meets the CSA's intent to avoid training fatigue by reducing the use of slides and increasing the dialogue and interaction. The training is found at https://atn.army.mil/dsp_template.aspx?dpID=51 (CAC-enabled site).
During FY14 the SHARP Directorate provided 1,700 "Got Your Back" training sessions that units could use to replace Part II, online self-study training, of the SHARP Annual Unit Refresher Training (URT). Got Your Back" is a dynamic, interactive lecture that utilizes audience interaction to explore scenarios where bystander intervention is warranted to stop potential sexual violence and challenge victim blaming attitudes. To date we have conducted approximately 1,350 training sessions and we are on track to execute the remaining 350 by the end of 4th QTR. For FY15, we will again offer "Got Your Back" training. We have 1,075 sessions for units to schedule to enhance their URT. We have also posted several real-life vignettes that you can use to promote small group discussions. The vignettes are located on the SHARP Knowledge Center site, https://www.us.army.mil/suite/folder/43010033. My goal is to ultimately have a "menu" of training that you can use but we're not quite there yet. I also know that we are lacking on harassment training and specific training for civilians. We'll get there.
The CSA approved on 2 Jun a pilot program for SHARP Resource Centers (SHARP-RCs) based on the JBLM model. The Pilot will expand the SHARP-RC concept to a total of 12 installations across the Army. It brings together in a central location all victim services in our response system, streamlining the process for the victim and increasing effectiveness in all aspects of their care and treatment, as well as the investigation/prosecution of the subject. The installations are: Hood, Bragg, JBLM, Campbell, Drum, Riley, Schofield Barracks, Leonard Wood, Sill, Redstone, Arijan and Europe (location TBD). The Pilot builds on existing SHARP-RCs and adds locations that give us a wide sampling to measure effectiveness. We will report back to the CSA at the next SHARP Summit in Feb.
We continue to update our policies, albeit a very slow process in actually getting them out of the Pentagon. Therefore, we will communicate with you through blogs, websites, newsletters, and other forms of interaction until documents are final. Our latest EXORD should be released shortly and accomplishes two things: 1) finalizes our 'sensitive position' screening policy and 2) codifies BDE and below authorized billets for SHARP personnel. The most significant change is that at company level, the authorized position will be a collateral duty SHARP Rep -- not a VA or SARC, but an NCO trained to provide the Commander with program compliance and training support.
The SHARP Chapter of AR 600-20 will be routed for review and comment late next week. This is the Army version of the DoD Directive that lays out the fundamentals of the SHARP program -- what the Commander needs to know. A follow-on DA PAM will lay out the specifics of how to run the program at all levels. Finally, our updated SHARP Campaign Plan has been signed and is posted on our website.
I also want to update you on the status of the DOD POTUS Report that is due in Dec. The sources of data include the Command Climate surveys, a new Survivor Experience Survey, the Workplace Gender Relations Survey (the infamous 26,000 number from 2012), Focus Group data (Ft. Riley and Ft. Gordon), and reporting data pulled from Defense Sexual Assault Incident Database (DSAID). The bulk of these surveys will be executed by DOD but we will be fully engaged. I know everyone is exhausted from doing surveys, investigations and focus groups, but the information gathered this summer will be critical in determining the stance of the White House related to sexual assault in the Military.
Our timeline for the POTUS report is extremely tight. To ensure mission success, we need accurate data and 100 percent of our Brigade SARCs with DSAID access. Right now, the data quality is not great. For example, my SHARP team compares sexual assault data entered into DSAID with sexual assault cases provided by the Criminal Investigation Command (CID). At this time, CID is reporting 384 sexual assault cases that have not been entered into DSAID. Of the cases that have been entered in DSAID, 346 are unable to interface with the CID data due to issues such as incorrect CID case numbers, incorrect victim SSNs, or other errors. We have been providing this information and other quality control errors to ACOM/ASCC/DRU SHARP Program Managers and installation SARCs. With barely three months until the end of the fiscal year, I implore everyone to make this a priority to get our data correct.
That's it for now. Thanks for all your efforts!