Research and Reports


Military Justice Overview (PDF)

Military Sexual Assault Fact Sheets

Debunked: Fact-Checking the Pentagon’s Claims Regarding Military Justice
Our analysis reveals that the Pentagon exaggerated and distorted the facts in order to undermine fundamental reform of the military justice system.

Racial Disparity in Military Justice: Findings of Substantial and Persistent Racial Disparities Within the United States Military Justice System
POD’s analysis of the data shows that, for every year reported and across all service branches, black service members were substantially more likely than white service members to face military justice or disciplinary action.

Federal Lawsuit Reveals Air Force Cover Up: Racial Disparities in Military Justice Part II
Documents obtained by POD through litigation show that the working group touted by the Air Force met only briefly and made only superficial recommendations, none of which have apparently been implemented by Air Force leadership. Instead, the Air Force has engaged in a multi-year effort to keep the findings and recommendations of its working group hidden, forcing POD to file suit in federal court.


Protect Our Defenders Collaboration with Human Rights Watch
Booted: Lack of Recourse for Wrongfully Discharged US Military Rape Survivors 2016 

Protect Our Defenders Collaboration with Human Rights Watch
Embattled: Retaliation Against Sexual Assault Survivors in the U.S. Military online and PDF 2015

U.S. Department of Defense Office of Inspector General (DOD IG)
Evaluation of the Separation of Service Members Who Made a Report of Sexual Assault 2016

U.S. Department of Defense Office of Inspector General (DOD IG)
Evaluation of the Separation of Service Members Who Made a Report of Sexual Assault 2016

In accordance with House Report 114‑102 to accompany Public Law 114-92, “National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016,” the Department of Defense evaluated the separations of service members who made unrestricted reports of sexual assault.

RAND Corporation
Perceived Retaliation Against Military Sexual Assault Victims
In response to the high and stable rates of perceived retaliation against military sexual assault victims, in 2014, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced new procedures that would better prepare commanders, junior officers, and supervisors to “reduce the potential for retaliation.”


Since 2011, Protect Our Defenders has worked to ensure a respectful and inclusive work environment in the US Military by reducing sexual harassment, assault, and misogyny, which will enhance recruitment, unit cohesion, and readiness across the Armed Forces.1 In pursuit of this mission, Protect Our Defenders has partnered with Deloitte Consulting LLP (Deloitte) to better understand the current state of women’s experiences in the Armed Forces. This industry report will provide a “point in time” perspective on the gender demographics across four branches of the Armed Forces, the Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marine Corps. Download PDF.


2020 Independent Review Commission
Hard Truths and the Duty to Change: Recommendations from the Independent Review Commission on Sexual Assault in the Military
*Appointed by President Biden & Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin

RAND Corporation
Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment in the U.S. Military: 2014 RAND Military Workplace Study
*Most recently available military-wide Department of Defense-commissioned estimates of sexual assault and harassment

U.S. Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office (SAPRO) Reports


See POD’s twin racial disparity reports on the military justice system.

Congressional Research Service
Diversity, Inclusion, and Equal Opportunity in the Armed Services: Background and Issues for Congress 2019

A Congressional Research Service Report titled, Diversity, Inclusion, and Equal Opportunity in the Armed Services: Background and Issues for Congress featuring a citation of Protect Our Defenders’ Racial Disparity Report: “Despite great strides in racial equality and nondiscrimination, some concerns about the treatment of and opportunities for racial minorities have persisted into the 21st century. For example, some researchers have pointed to consistently higher rates of disciplinary action (i.e., court-martial or nonjudicial punishment) for black servicemembers relative to their white counterparts as evidence of persistent racial bias in the military justice system.”

New England Journal of Public Policy


Statements of Panel Member Elizabeth J. Hillman to Response Systems to Adult Sexual Assault Crimes Panel
Download PDF

Includes Statement of Subcommittee Member Elizabeth L. Hillman (May 2014); Separate Statement Dissenting From the Interim Report of the Role of the Commander Subcommittee (January 20, 2014); and Response Systems Panel on Military Sexual Assault Separate Statement of Dean Elizabeth L. Hillman & Mr. Harvey Bryant (June 22, 2014)

Judicial Proceedings Panel
JPP reports from 2015-2017

Defense Advisory Committee on Investigation, Prosecution, and Defense of Sexual Assault in the Armed Forces
DACIPAD Reports from 2017-2019


U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)
Report to Congressional Committees, 2015
Sexual Assault: Actions Needed to Improve DOD’s Prevention Strategy and to Help Ensure It Is Effectively Implemented

GAO recommends that DOD fully include in its new policy on sexual harassment CDC’s principles for sexual violence prevention and mechanisms for anonymous reporting, develop standard data elements and definitions for reporting sexual harassment incidents, and incorporate in its overarching prevention strategy elements key for a long-term, results oriented strategy. DOD generally concurred with the recommendations.


RAND Corporation
Enemy Within: Military Sexual Assault Inflicts Physical, Psychological, Financial Pain 2013

Inadequate Defenses: Multiple barriers stand between service-members who have been sexually assaulted and their access to psycho-logical health care, as evidenced by long wait times for those seeking care, shortages of well qualified mental health service providers, and a limited availability of care in rural regions. Active-duty personnel are often unable to take time o during standard work hours to seek care. Worries about confidentiality may prevent some from doing so.

Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment in the U.S. Military 2018

The Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office in the Office of the Secretary of Defense selected the RAND Corporation to provide a new and independent evaluation of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and gender discrimination across the U.S. military


Breland, J.Y., Donalson, R., Li, Y., Hebenstreit, C.L., Golstein, L.A., Maguen, S. (2017). Military Sexual Trauma Is Associated With Eating Disorders, While Combat Exposure Is Not. Psychol Trauma, 10.1037.

Brignone, E., Gundlapalli, A. V., Blais, R. K., Carter, M. E., Suo, Y., Samore, M. H.,… Fargo, J. D. (2016). Differential Risk for Homelessness Among US Male and Female Veterans With a Positive Screen for Military Sexual Trauma. JAMA Psychiatry, 73(6), 582-589.

Campbell, K.L. (2017). Protecting Our Defenders: The Need to Ensure Due Process for Women in the Military Before Amending the Selective Service Act. Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly, 45(1).

Everhart, Anna (2020). Sexual Assault in the Military: Activism, Representation, and the Importance of Policy Change. Disability Pride Week 2020, Duke University.

Melin, Julia (2016). Desperate Choices: Why Black Women Join the U.S. Military at Higher Rates than Men and All Other Racial and Ethnic Groups. New England Journal of Public Policy.

Mengeling, M.A., Booth, B.M., Torner, J.C., & Sadler, A.G. (2015). Post-Sexual Assault Health Care Utilization Among OEF/OIF Servicewomen. Med Care, 53(4), 136-142.

Millegan, J., Milburn, E. K., LeardMann, C. A., Street, A. E., Williams, D., Trone, D. W., & Crum-Cianflone, N. F. (2015). Recent Sexual Trauma and Adverse Health and Occupational Outcomes Among U.S. Service Women. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 28(4), 298–306.

Monteith, L.L., Bahrainni, N.H., Matarazzo, B.B., Soberay, K.A., & Smith, C.P. (2016). Perceptions of Institutional Betrayal Predict Suicidal Self-Directed Violence Among Veterans Exposed to Military Sexual Trauma. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 72(7), 743-755.

Pandey, N., Ashfaq, S.N., Dauterive, E.W., MacCarthy, A.A., & Copeland, L.A. (2017). Military Sexual Trauma and Obesity Among Women Veterans. Journal of Women’s Health.

Pavao, J., Turchik, J. A., Hyun, J. K., Karepenko, J., Saweikis, M., McCutcheon, S.,…Kimerling, R. (2013). Military Sexual Trauma Among Homeless VeteransJournal of General Internal Medicine, 28(Suppl 2), 536-541.

Sadler, Anne G., Booth, Brenda M., Cook, Brian L., Doebbeling, Bradley N. (2003) Factors Associated with Women’s Risk of Rape in the Military Environment. American Journal of Industrial Medicine, (43) 262–273.

Street, A. E., Gradus, J. L., Giasson, H. L., Vogt, D., & Resick, P. A. (2013). Gender Differences Among Veterans Deployed in Support of the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 28(Suppl 2), 556–562.

Turner, Aaron P., Hardin, Kaitlin A., Brier, Moriah J., Anderson, Derek R., & Williams, Rhonda M., (2020) Military Sexual Trauma and Chronic Pain in VeteransAmerican Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, 14 May 2020, Volume Publish Ahead of Print Issue. DOI: 10.1097