White River Junction VA Finds Military Sexual Trauma Dates Back To World War II

Sep 13, 2016

A new study out of the White River Junction VA shows that dating back to World War II, women have experienced sexual trauma during military service.

The military has only been tracing sexual assaults since the 1990s, but a recent study of 52 women who served in wars as far back as World War II found sexual trauma dates back further.

Kristina Wolff is a veteran and one of the medical researchers who collected the data. She says society often thinks of military sexual trauma as a new issue.

But looking back in history, she says it actually seems common in the military, at least anecdotally.

“All of them experienced one or more forms of what we now call military sexual trauma while they were serving in the military. This is all branches, and military sexual trauma runs from sexual harassment to sexual assault,” Wolff told VPR over the phone.

Wolff says reporting of sexual trauma in the military is still low. More research needs to be conducted in order to provide women with the services they need.