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Sexual Misconduct Prevention & Response Office (SeMPRO)

How to get help: Call 1800 SeMPRO (1800 736 776) 24/7 | Immediate danger? Call 000 (AUS) | Exit Site

Commanders and Managers of Defence APS Personnel

24/7 Help

clickClick - SeMPRO

call Call - 1800 SeMPRO
1800 736 776
outside AUS 612 6127 1759

SMS Text - 0429 600 800
outside AUS 61 429 600 800

Defence APS employees who have been affected by a sexual offence can, at any time, contact their State/Territory police service or call 000 in an emergency.

Commanders and managers of Defence APS employees and external service providers may become involved in the management of Unrestricted Reports of a sexual offence. How a commander, manager or supervisor responds to a disclosure of sexual misconduct is paramount to the victim's recovery. Remember, the only guilty person in a sexual offence is the offender. Sexual offences are crimes. While the impact of sexual misconduct can be devastating, recovery is possible and there is help available.

The decision to report a sexual assault is a very personal one, as is the decision regarding who to report the incident to, and the level of support needed and wanted. The first you may know that a Defence APS member of your staff or external service provider has been sexually assaulted is when they notify you of their absence from work. However, even then, they may not feel sufficiently comfortable to disclose fully such personal information. Defence APS employees and external service providers can report a sexual assault/offence directly to the local hospital, doctor, a rape crisis centre, or their State/Territory police.

What should I do?

If/when you do become aware that an employee has been sexually assaulted, your initial response is vitally important.

  • Listen to what your staff member is telling you and let them talk at their own pace.
  • Believe them.
  • Do not ask 'why' questions (e.g. "Why did you go there?").
  • Remind them that the assault was not their fault and acknowledge their bravery for talking to you

All reports of sexual misconduct are to be actioned in accordance with DI(G) PERS 35-4 - Reporting and management of sexual misconduct including sexual offences. Unrestricted Reports must be reported to the authorities for appropriate investigative action. In situations involving a Defence APS employee, the State/Territory police must be notified immediately.

What support is available?

There are a range of support and counselling services available to those affected by sexual assault by contacting the Employee Assistance Program. SeMPRO can also provide guidance on appropriate and relevant support mechanisms available within the employee's locality.

Where available, and with the employee's consent, the local SeMPRO Support Officer may accompany them to receive medical attention at either a medical centre or public hospital.

If the employee has been affected by an incident of sexual misconduct during the course of their employment and they have suffered a physical or mental injury or disease as a result, they may be entitled to lodge a claim for workers' compensation. Further information is available from the Comcare website, or from the Directorate of People Operations (DPO).

For further information

Call SeMPRO on 1800 SeMPRO (1800 736 776).

A Defence member or Defence employee is not prevented from reporting the assault to their State/Territory police or ringing 000 in an emergency.