Sharp: Sexual Assault Prevention Program

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Cases of sexual harassment and assault continue to rise within the Army, leaving leaders wondering why. The purpose of this essay is to express my ideas contributing to the rise of incidents. Cases keep occurring due to a lack of trust throughout the leadership. The lack of information in the Sexual Harassment Assault Response Prevention (SHARP) training. Alcohol is a major contributing factor. I will reference ADP 6-22 and for factual information.

To begin, a reason that incidents continue is the lack of trust throughout the leadership. In the leadership requirement model, one of the competencies is to lead. Leading is composed of five characteristics. One of those five characteristics is building trust (ADP 6-22). Leaders need to build trust within their Soldiers. Without building trust, subordinates would not feel confident in their leader. If Soldiers have trust, they will be open to their supervisors. Also, more truthful about their plans on the weekends. They will tell their leaders when something doesn’t seem right. One way to build trust is to have better communication among leaders and subordinates. Another method is building a better professional relationship between Soldiers. Introducing classes that leaders can take to better themselves at communicating and building professional relationships, having leaders educated and helped with communication skills can build more trust.

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Another reason that incidents continue to occur is the lack of information in training. To date, limited training on SHARP isn’t enough information to feel comfortable with handling a SHARP incident. The videos given in the training are not realistic scenarios. SHARP representatives educate about SHARP through PowerPoint slides. These slides tend to be repetitive. SHARP training does include reporting options and the process in that. But not all information is given. Educating soldiers on real scenarios gets their attention by making it more serious and important. It can also add awareness in situations that might seem okay.

Furthermore, the criminal justice process can be included in the SHARP training. Only a handful of Soldiers are familiar with the process. A paralegal added to the SHARP training program can answer questions such as the longevity of reports on file. Integrating these ideas can help a vast knowledge among the ranks.

Finally, alcohol is a major contributing factor to SHARP incidents. According to CBS news, alcohol has played a major role in two-thirds of the incidents reported. Leaders in the organization have tried to control the sale of alcohol (CBS news). This has not decreased the number of incidents. Consumption of alcohol among Soldiers is not likely to change. So, we need to educate soldiers that alcohol is going to compromise their mental state. It will also decrease situational awareness, encouraging Soldiers to put their guard down. A way the organization can educate is by having an event that shows intoxicated Soldiers. Putting them in situations that situational awareness is critical to have. This way, Soldiers see how alcohol affects you.

In conclusion, the day every Soldier Intervenes, Acts, and Motivates. That will be day incidents will start decreasing and educating leaders on how to build trust among the ranks — incorporating more information in SHARP training that will make an impact. Enlightening Soldiers on the mental state when consuming alcohol.  

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