Prevalence of Military Sexual Trauma and Sexual Orientation Discrimination Among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Military Personnel: A Descriptive Study

Abstract:

Despite the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue (DADT) and the update to the Transgender Policy, there remain concerns about the persistence of military sexual trauma (MST) and sexual orientation discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) service members. A sample of 253 participants (89 women, 164 men) completed an Internet-based survey that assessed the prevalence of sexual orientation discrimination (e.g., offensive speech, physical or discriminatory behaviors) and MST (e.g., sexual harassment and sexual assault). The survey was conducted between April 2012 and October 2013. Women and men reported similar levels of sexual orientation discrimination in the military. Participants reported experiencing more threats and intimation, vandalism, and physical assault outside of the military than inside the military (p < 0.05). Although the prevalence of MST (both sexual harassment and sexual assault) in the military was high among both genders, women were more likely to report experiences of sexual harassment compared to men (p < 0.05). Our findings demonstrate the prevalence of MST and sexual orientation discrimination among LGBT service members in the military and point to the need for strong accountability and oversight to protect sexual minority persons while they are serving their country.

Citation: 
Gurung S., Ventuneac A, Rendina J.H, Savarese E., Grov C., Parsons JT. Prevalence of Military Sexual Trauma and Sexual Orientation Discrimination Among Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Military Personnel: A Descriptive Study. Sexuality Research and Social Policy. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13178-017-0311-z. Link >>

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