Perceptions of sexual harassment and sexual assault : a study of gender differences among U.S. Navy officers
Bouldin, Patricia L.
Grayson, Alexandra M.
Eitelberg, Mark J.
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This study examines gender differences among U.S. Navy officers in their perceptions of what constitutes sexual harassment and sexual assault. Additionally, the study explores possible reasons for these observed differences. The primary source of data is a survey administered to active-duty Navy officers at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in December 2009. Other sources include the Department of Defense survey of "Service Academy Gender Relations" (2008) and previous research on related topics. NPS survey results confirm that perceptions of sexual assault and sexual harassment differ by gender; further, these differences are amplified by other demographic factors. Male respondents tend to believe that sexual harassment and sexual assault are not a problem in the Navy largely because they have neither experienced nor witnessed such events. Although most female respondents believe that gender relations are better now than in the past, they view sexual harassment and sexual assault as a continuing problem. A majority of men and women agree that the Navy's current approach toward preventing sexual harassment and sexual assault can be improved. A number of respondents to the NPS survey suggest ways to redesign training, including use of testimony by victims. Several recommendations for further research are offered.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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