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DOD/OS RIN: 0790-AI36 Publication ID: Fall 2016 
Title: Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program Procedures  

This rule will provide sexual assault victims the ability to get a fresh start through an Expedited Transfer policy aimed at removing the stigma associated with victimization. It will also allow sexual assault victims to be notified of the protections and support that come with individual legal representation as they navigate the criminal justice process. With this rule Reserve Component and National Guard members who are victims of sexual assault would receive the same SAPR advocacy regardless of when the sexual assault incident occurred, similar to the advocate support afforded their active duty counterparts. The goal of this rule is to ensure victims of sexual assault receive improved victim advocacy support, quality health care service, appropriate and sensitive command involvement, individualized legal support, and a military culture better informed on the issue of sexual assault. This rule establishes the SAFE Helpline as the sole DoD hotline for crisis intervention; establishes requirements for a sexual assault victim safety assessment and the execution of a high-risk team to monitor cases where the sexual assault victim's life and safety may be in jeopardy; and incorporates several requirements of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) relating to sexual assault in the military.

Agency: Department of Defense(DOD)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 32 CFR 105   
Legal Authority: Pub. L. 112-239    Pub. L. 113-66    Pub. L. 113-291    Pub. L. 114-92   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need:

Issue this part to:

(1) Implement 32 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 103 and assign responsibilities and provide guidance and procedures for the SAPR Program;

(2) Establish SAPR minimum program standards, SAPR training requirements, and SAPR requirements for the Department of Defense (DoD) Annual Report on Sexual Assault in the Military; and consistent with title 10, United States Code (Reference (d)) the DoD Task Force Report on Care for Victims of Sexual Assault (Reference (e)) and pursuant to References (b) and (c), and Public Law 106-65, 108-375, 109-163, 109-364, 110-417, 111-84, 111-383, 112-81, 112-239, 113-66, 113-291, and 114-92;

(3) Provide of the preemption of state and local laws mandating reporting of an adult sexual assault incident;

(4) Protect from retaliation, coercion, and reprisal due to reporting a sexual assault; 

(5) Provide for individualized legal representation from a Special Victims’ Counsel (SVC) or Victims’ Legal Counsel (VLC); 

(6) Provide for the opportunity to request an Expedited Transfer as a means to getting a fresh start to support victim recovery; 

(7) Establish the multidisciplinary Case Management Group as the oversight body of an Unrestricted sexual assault report.

Summary of the Legal Basis:

This regulation is pursued under the authorities of all applicable congressional mandates from section 113 of title 10, United States Code (U.S.C.), and Public Law 106-65, 108-375, 109-163, 109-364, 110-417, 111-84, 112-81, 113-66; 113-291, 114-92.


The DoD will not have current guidance relating to the provisions of law enacted by Congress critical to the implementation of sexual assault prevention and response (SAPR), SAPR training standards, victim support, and reporting procedures.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits:

Fiscal year 2016 estimate of the anticipated cost associated with this rule is approximately $15 million. Additionally, each of the Military Services establishes its own SAPR budget for the programmatic costs arising from the implementation of the training, prevention, reporting, response, and oversight requirements established by this rule. These costs are less than those of other alternative benefits and include: 

(1) A complete SAPR Policy consisting of this part and 32 CFR 103, to include comprehensive SAPR procedures to implement the DoD Directive 6495.01, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) Program, which is the DoD policy on prevention and response to sexual assaults involving members of the U.S. Armed Forces.

(2) Guidance and procedures with which the DoD may establish a culture free of sexual assault, through an environment of prevention, education and training, response capability, victim support, reporting procedures, and appropriate accountability that enhances the safety and well-being of all persons covered by this part and 32 CFR 103.

(3) Requirement that medical care and SAPR services are gender-responsive, culturally competent, and recovery-oriented. A 24 hour, 7 day per week sexual assault response capability for all locations, including deployed areas for persons covered in this part.

(4) Creating Command sexual assault awareness and prevention programs and DoD law enforcement procedures that enable persons to be held appropriately accountable for their actions.

(5) Standardized SAPR requirements, terminology, guidelines, protocols, and guidelines for training materials focus on awareness, prevention, and response at all levels, as appropriate.  

(6) Requiring Sexual Assault Response Coordinators (SARC), SAPR Victim Advocates (VA), and other responders to assist sexual assault victims regardless of Service affiliation.

(7) Procedures for informing victims at the time of making the report, or as soon as practicable, of the option to request a temporary or permanent expedited transfer from their assigned command or installation, or to a different location within their assigned command or installation, in accordance with the procedures for commanders in 105.9 of this part.

(8) Protections from reprisal, or threat of reprisal, for filing a report of sexual assault.

(9) Reporting options for Service members and military dependents 18 years and older who have been sexually assaulted.

(10) Providing support to an active duty Military Service member regardless of when or where the sexual assault took place.

(11) Establishing a DoD-wide certification program with a national accreditor to ensure all sexual assault victims are offered the assistance of a SARC or SAPR VA who has obtained this certification.

(12) Implementing training standards that cover general SAPR training for Service members, and contain specific standards for: accessions, annual , professional military education and leadership development training, pre- and post-deployment, pre-command, General and Field Officers and SES, military recruiters, civilians who supervise military, and responders trainings.

 (13) Requiring Military Departments to establish procedures for supporting the DoD Safe Helpline in accordance with Guidelines for the DoD Safe Helpline for the referral database, provide timely response to victim feedback, publicize the DoD Safe Helpline to SARCs and Service members and at military confinement facilities.

 (14) Directing additional responsibilities for the DoD SAPRO Director (develop metrics for measuring effectiveness, act as liaison between DoD and other agencies with regard to SAPR, oversee development of strategic program guidance and joint planning objectives, quarterly include Military Service Academies as a SAPR IPT standard agenda item, semi-annually meet with the Superintendents of the Military Service Academies, and develop and administer standardized and voluntary surveys for survivors of sexual assault to comply with 1726 of NDAA FY 14.

(15) Providing for the Preemption of state and local laws requiring disclosure of personally identifiable information of the service member (or adult military dependent) victim or alleged perpetrator to state or local law enforcement agencies, unless such reporting is necessary to prevent or mitigate a serious and imminent threat to the health and safety of an individual, as determined by an authorized Department of Defense official.


The degree of risk to Service member is that sexual assault victims will not be able to access support services or understand the availability of resources to assist them, such as: the opportunity to receive an Expedited Transfer as a means to getting a fresh start to support recovery; inability to request a Restricted Report in mandatory reporting jurisdiction; and failure to capture and preserve forensic evidence associated with sexual assault cases.

Action Date FR Cite
Interim Final Rule  04/11/2013  78 FR 21715   
Interim Final Rule Effective  04/11/2013 
Interim Final Rule Comment Period End  06/10/2013 
Interim Final Rule  11/00/2016 
Additional Information: DoD Instruction 6495.02, "Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) Program Procedures"
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Diana Rangoussis
Senior Policy Advisory, SAPRO
Department of Defense
Office of the Secretary
4800 Mark Center Drive, Suite 07G21,
Alexandria, VA 22311
Phone:571 372-2648