Society

Military Removes 60 People From Jobs After Screenings To Ensure Personnel Safety

| by Amanda Schallert

Military officials removed 60 people from jobs as drill sergeants, counselors and army recruiters, after investigations prompted by increasing rates of military sexual assault.

Defense secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the ongoing screenings of military personnel last month to ensure the safety of people — especially women — in the army, according to the Huffington Post.

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Since the screenings began, 55 people have been suspended from their jobs for a variety of reasons, including concerns about alcohol use and inappropriate sexual behavior, according to the Guardian.

Earlier this year, the Pentagon reported that the rate of sexual assault in military had spiked by 37 percent. The report surfaced at the same time cases of high ranking military personnel involved in covering up sexual assault were brought to light.

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"The leadership of this department has no higher priority than the safety and welfare of our men and women in uniform,” said Lieutenant Colonel Cathy Wilkinson, a Pentagon spokeswoman. “And that includes ensuring they are free from the threat of sexual harassment and sexual assault." 

Officials hope to complete about 20,000 screenings by October.

Sources: Huffington Post, The Guardian