Military Sexual Trauma

Protecting Survivors

 The CLMP believes a rape subculture exists when the number of sexual assault incidents exceeds the norm, victims are frequently blamed for their assaults, and internal forces disincentive reporting to authorities.  The Department of Defense estimates that approximately 15,000 service members were sexually assaulted in 2016, yet only 143 cases resulted in a conviction for a sexual assault related offense.  As Dr. Kristen Zaleksi, a CLMP Advisory Council member and author of "Understanding and Treating Military Sexual Trauma" explains, military service, female service members are often times not seen as part of the collective group and, therefore, acceptable targets of sexual violence.  


A female service member’s outsider status is accentuated by the military’s gendered vocabulary, its "masculinized" culture, and its emphasis on enduring pain in silence.

There is a rape subculture that exists in the military that will not be extinguished without increased accountability, such as through the elimination of the Feres Doctrine.


Read Dwight Stirling and Laura Riley's article in Los Angeles Lawyer Magazine on military culture.  


Purchase Dr. Zaleski's book "Understanding and Treating Military Sexual Trauma"