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Officials call for new approach to handle sexual assault crimes within the Military

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(WBNG) -- Officials say the military is currently facing a problem of what they are calling an "epidemic" of sexual assault.

A bipartisan group of senators is pushing for a new approach to handling these crimes within the military.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand says the more serious crimes should be investigated independently, ensuring a better process for all.

New York's junior senator says sexual assault is rampant in the military and more needs to be done to help survivors.

"The most recent Pentagon survey found that 2 in 3 survivors reported retaliation because they reported a crime against themselves. It's simply unacceptable; we owe it more to our service members to prevent these crimes," said Sen.Gillibrand.

The Department of Defense estimates more than 20,000 service members were sexually assaulted in 2018 alone.

Abigail Lane

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