Recommendations from the Independent Review Commission on Sexual Assault in the Military

In February 2021, a 90-day Independent Review Commission (IRC) on Sexual Assault in the Military was established to assess the military’s current treatment of sexual assault and sexual harassment. The IRC reviewed the military’s policies and processes regarding sexual assault and sexual harassment, and spoke to over 600 people including military leadership, service members, and sexual assault survivors. In Hard Truths and the Duty to Change, the IRC describes how sexual assault is currently handled in the military, and presents an overview of the 80+ recommendations developed from their review.

The recommendations focus on four priority areas:

  1. Recommendations for Accountability in the Military Justice System
  2. Recommendations to Prevent Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault in the U.S. Military
  3. Recommendations for Climate & Culture
  4. Recommendations on Victim Care & Support

The response from the Secretary of Defense regarding the IRC’s findings can be accessed here: Department of Defense Actions and Implementation Guidance to Address Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment in the Military, and the corresponding press release can be viewed here.


More resources related to sexual assault in the military can be found at the Homeland Security Digital Library (HSDL).

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