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About the Survey

The Workplace and Gender Relations (WGR) Survey of Military Members is a Congressionally mandated survey that provides the DoD’s official estimates of the prevalence of gender discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual assault in the Military.

The WGR is a confidential survey of military members serving on active duty or in the Reserve/National Guard. The results of the survey inform leaders throughout the DoD, the military Service branches, and Congress on the progress being made to prevent and respond to gender discrimination, sexual harassment, and sexual assault in the Military. The WGR provides critical insights regarding the characteristics of these incidents; Service member experiences with reporting; as well as their perceptions of unit culture and climate. Senior leaders frequently refer to data from the WGR to support policy and program improvements. For example, in 2021, the Independent Review Commission on Sexual Assault in the Military used data from the WGR to inform the development of their recommendations related to the handling of sexual harassment complaints.

This survey is conducted every two years and the next survey is scheduled for 2023.

Frequently Asked Questions

How did you pick me?

OPA uses well-established, scientific procedures to randomly select a sample that represents the Defense community based on combinations of demographic characteristics (e.g., Service, race and ethnicity, paygrade, gender).

Why does the survey ask personal questions?

Sometimes sensitive questions are asked in order to improve personnel policies, programs, and practices. As with all questions on the survey, your responses are confidential. This survey has also received a federal “Certificate of Confidentiality” that provides OPA with additional protection against any attempt to subpoena confidential survey records.

Will my answers be kept private?

All data will be reported in the aggregate and no individual data will be reported. We encourage you to safeguard your Ticket Number to prevent unauthorized access to your survey. In addition, to ensure your privacy, please be aware of the environment in which you take the survey (e.g., take the survey when no one else can see your computer screen, take care to not leave the survey site on your computer screen unattended). Survey responses received are confidential. OPA has received a federal “Certificate of Confidentiality” that provides additional protection against any attempt to subpoena confidential survey records. However, if you indicate a direct threat to harm yourself or others within responses or communications about the survey, because of concern for your welfare, OPA may notify an office in your area for appropriate action.

What is a “Certificate of Confidentiality”?

A “Certificate of Confidentiality” is an additional privacy assurance provided by the Department of Health and Human Services that the identifiable information and responses of a research project’s respondents will be protected from compelled disclosure in administrative, legislative, or other investigative proceedings (e.g., protection from a subpoena). Section 301(d) of the Public Health Service Act (42 USC 214(d)) authorizes the Secretary of Health and Human Services to provide these certificates to qualifying biomedical and behavioral research of a sensitive nature. While the certificate protects against involuntary or forced disclosures of information (e.g., a subpoena) that could identify survey respondents, it does not limit voluntary disclosure of this information in matters such as child abuse or a respondent’s threatened violence to self or others.

Do I have to answer all the questions?

No, it is not necessary to answer every question. You can skip any question that you prefer not to answer.

Do I have to participate in the survey since it is Congressionally mandated?

No. The Department is required to conduct this survey, but your participation is completely voluntary. You may choose not to participate and can opt out of the survey at any time. You may also skip over any questions you do not wish to answer. If you do not wish to participate or receive additional reminders about this survey, you may opt out by contacting OPA’s Survey Processing Center at 1-800-881-5307. You must provide your ticket number to do so.