Assessment of Sexual Harassment in the Active-Duty Navy

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Abstract

This article reviews past research and the series of events that led to the implementation in 1989 of a biennial U.S. Navy-wide survey of sexual harassment for active-duty personnel. Results from the most recent administration of this survey in 1991 are presented and compared to the 1989 findings. In 1991, 44% of enlisted women and 33% of female officers indicated that they had been sexually harassed during the 1-year survey period. Small percentages of enlisted men (8%) and male officers (2%) reported being sexually harassed during the same period. These percentages represent a significant increase from those found in 1989 for two groups: female officers and enlisted men. Specific information regarding the forms of sexual harassment behaviors, the characteristics of victims and perpetrators, actions taken following harassment, and the effects of the harassment experience are presented. Last, data exploring methodological issues in the measurement of sexual harassment through surveys are presented and discussed.

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