SAAM: MacDill is all in

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Vernon L. Fowler Jr.
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing public affairs
On April 1, 2014 at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., members of Advocates for Sexual Assault Prevention MacDill came together and hung teal ribbons around the junior enlisted dorms to commemorate the beginning of Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

April is the designated month for SAAM, and this makes the tenth annual observation by the Department of Defense. The national theme for this year is "Live Our Values: Step Up to Stop Sexual Assault."

"Sexual assault affects all walks of life and it is important for all of us to step up and take action to end this crime," said 1st Lt. Brittany Clifton, Deputy Sexual Assault Response Coordinator. "We must work together to prevent and recognize offender behavior, and take a stand as pro-social bystanders."

The purpose of SAAM is to present messages and provide activities that offer personal and unit commitments to eliminate sexual assault in the military.

The DOD community plays a crucial role in preventing and responding properly to sexual assault; and its intervention can help reduce risks and eliminate inappropriate behavior, potentially decreasing the number of crimes committed.

To help sexual assault prevention, MacDill has a motto of "Respect and Protect." Everyone must have respect for self, others, and the mission, as well as, protect themselves, their fellow wingmen, and the DOD.

"As Airmen, we have an inherent responsibility, not only to protect our nation, but to protect each other," said Clifton. "We are brothers and sisters in arms, and we must take that very seriously if we ever hope to end sexual assault."

MacDill will be hosting a number of events to inform the community on the realities of sexual assault and how service members must work together to end it in the military, as well as to continue commemorating SAAM. These events include, but are not limited to, a clothing drive, 5K run, cornhole tournament, and a guest speaker presentation. For more information on all SAAM events, contact the SARC office at 828-2678.