Vice Adm. Robert Thomas Jr.
140403-N-UN259-011 YOKOSUKA, Japan (April 4, 2014) Vice Adm. Robert Thomas Jr., commander U.S. 7th Fleet, addresses Sailors during Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) training held at Fleet Activities Yokosuka’s Fleet Theater. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Alonzo M. Archer/Released)
By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Alonzo M. Archer, Navy Public Affairs Support Element Japan

YOKOSUKA, Japan – Sailors assigned to 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) and embarked staff attended Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) training on April 3, 2014 at the Yokosuka Naval Base Theater.

SAPR training is designed to raise Sailors awareness about sexual assault and motivate them to intervene when they believe a sexual assault is taking place.

The training was given through skits performed by the ships Coalition of Sailors Against Destructive Decisions (CSAAD) chapter, the 1st and 2nd Class Petty Officer Associations, and the Junior Sailor Association.

The performances were set in common scenarios where sexual assaults occur, such as nightclubs and liberty ports.

Not only did the Sailors act out the occurrence of sexual assaults, but the proper courses of action and avenues available in dealing with them.

“The objective of todays training was to bring awareness to sexual assault,” said Culinary Specialist 1st Class Calvin Brown, a member of the Blue Ridge 1st Class Petty Officer association. “Sexual assault can be an uncomfortable topic. It’s important that we put this discussion out there for our Sailors as a whole to ease some of the tension and present much needed information on a large scale.”

The training concluded with a closing statement from Chief Mass Communication Specialist Bleu Moore, who stressed the importance of SAPR training to the audience of more than 300 Sailors ranging from E-1 to O-9.

“This training was completely out of the box,” said Moore. “This wasn’t death by PowerPoint. The skits were entertaining yet informative. There were over 300 people here today, and not one fell asleep. Someone in today’s audience had the mid watch last night, yet their attention was captured and held the entire time. For that reason, and many others, I believe today’s training was a complete success.”

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