People are the Army's number one priority - they are our greatest strength, our most valuable asset, and our most important weapon system. Our responsibility and enduring commitment is ensuring you have the right leadership, policies, and resources so you can thrive in cohesive teams that are trained, disciplined, and fit.
Over the past year and a half, our Army embarked on an unprecedented review of how we care for people. We have identified that structural changes are needed in the Army's Sexual Harassment and Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) program. In response, we are launching a pilot to test a new approach to providing victim-centered care and services - the Sexual Harassment/Sexual Assault (SH/SA) Fusion Directorate. The Fusion Directorates will prioritize victim care by integrating and synchronizing multiple response functions, increasing transparency of the sexual assault adjudication process, and providing an alternate independent reporting process outside the immediate chain of command.
Starting in October, Fusion Directorate pilots will be established at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Schofield Barracks, and Forts Bragg, Irwin, Riley, and Sill. Simultaneously, the Army Reserve will test a virtual Fusion Directorate in the 99th Readiness Division. This pilot will inform future decisions on enduring program changes, possible expansion of Fusion Directorates to additional installations, and the building of a similar capability in the Army National Guard.
Our Army needs your help and support as we test this new approach to improving our response and support to victims of sexual harassment and sexual assault. We all have a responsibility to ensure Soldiers, Civilians, and Family members feel comfortable raising allegations of sexual harassment or sexual assault, know where and how to access services, quickly receive care and protection, and are treated with dignity and respect throughout the process. We also acknowledge the great efforts that many units are taking to combat sexual harassment and sexual assault. We look forward to learning more and incorporating best practices where applicable.
This and other efforts are nested with the Secretary of Defense 90-day Independent Review Commission recommendations to address the harmful behaviors of sexual harassment and sexual assault as well as other corrosive conditions that impact the health of the force. We remain steadfast in our commitment to care for our people and will continue to implement innovative solutions that address the needs of our Soldiers, Civilians, and Family members and preserve the trust of the American people.
Michael A. Grinston
Sergeant Major of the Army
James C. McConville
General, United States Army
Chief of Staff
Christine E. Wormuth
Secretary of the Army