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    SPAWAR leadership reinforces ‘Prevention is everyone’s duty’ at Sexual Harassment / Assault Stand-Down



    Story by Tina Stillions 

    Naval Information Warfare Systems Command (NAVWAR)

    SAN DIEGO - Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) Headquarters held a sexual harassment and assault training stand-down for civilian and military personnel April 18 as part of the Navy’s national Sexual Assault Awareness Month campaign.

    The annual training was designed to educate personnel on sexual harassment and sexual assault issues and to raise awareness about prevention throughout the command. The training was comprised of two parts – sexual harassment and sexual assault – and provided a venue for discussion. The military component at SPAWAR also received additional general military training following the day’s event.

    “These particular types of personal crimes and incidents can profoundly impact individuals, organizations and ultimately our ability to conduct our Navy missions,” said Rod Smith, deputy commander at SPAWAR. “Although we recognize that SPAWAR is unique compared to most fleet units due to our older workforce and demographics, we are not isolated from the effects of sexual assault and harassment in our Navy. It’s our problem too.”

    Smith said prevention is the responsibility of everyone and pointed out that raising awareness and understanding can prevent victimization.

    “Prevention is everyone’s duty. We all want a safe and productive environment for ourselves, our co-workers and our shipmates,” said Smith. “Today’s training is our effort to collectively eliminate the problem.”

    Cheryl McGuire, the Navy Region Southwest equal employment opportunity trainer, provided detailed descriptions for the sexual harassment portion of the training. She said management has a responsibility to act and to address any issue as soon as it is aware of a problem.

    SPAWAR’s Equal Opportunity Advisor, Chief Machinist Mate Joshua Jackson, facilitated the interactive question and answer portion that accompanied McGuire’s brief.

    “This is a great opportunity for our workforce to come together to refresh on sexual assault and sexual harassment procedures,” said Jackson. “As a command, we support the Navy's message and will not tolerate sexual assault. Prevention is everyone's duty. We must look out for each other and prevent harm."

    Sexual assault prevention and response is an important element of the readiness for the fleet. The Department of the Navy is working aggressively to prevent sexual assaults through education and awareness campaigns such as the one held at SPAWAR Headquarters. In addition to training, the Navy seeks to support sexual assault victims and to hold individuals accountable.

    "Events like these help to bring this issue into the spotlight. Every day at least one of our Navy shipmates becomes a victim of sexual assault," said SPAWAR Command Master Chief Octavia Harris. "Sailors must look out for each other and intervene if something is not right in a situation. If something does happen, it's important to know what to do and who to go to."

    Help raise awareness by joining the conversation on social media using #SAAM.

    Visit SPAWAR on the following social media sites:

    For more on SPAWAR, visit

    For more news from SPAWAR, visit



    Date Taken: 04.18.2012
    Date Posted: 04.18.2012 17:30
    Story ID: 86940
    Location: SAN DIEGO, CA, US 

    Web Views: 134
    Downloads: 0