Blackburn, Blumenthal, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Safeguard Sexual Abuse and Sexual Harassment Survivors in the U.S. Coast Guard

February 22, 2024

NASHVILLE, TENN. – U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) introduced legislation to protect survivors of sexual assault and sexual harassment at the United States Coast Guard Academy (CGA) and throughout the U.S. Coast Guard.


Click here to view or download a video on the legislation.

“After Operation Fouled Anchor revealed a culture of sexual abuse and a systematic suppression of reports of this abuse at the Coast Guard Academy, it’s clear that reforms need to be made. One of the most immediate actions we can take is to ensure that survivors of this sexual abuse—all of whom were young cadets intent on serving our country—can tell their stories without fear of punishment. Congress has an obligation to protect these young men and women and make these safe-to-report policies permanent,” said Senator Blackburn.

“We are sounding a call to action. Coast Guard survivors of sexual assault and harassment need and deserve safeguards—long overdue protections when they come forward against their attackers. Survivors are now understandably afraid they’ll be punished when reporting cases of sexual misconduct. They should be supported in their recovery and pursuit of justice and receive help needed to heal. This legislation holds the Coast Guard Academy accountable by enshrining safe-to-report policies and ensuring proper protections. Recent history dramatically shows how at-risk Coast Guard members are to sexual harassment and assault—supporting prompt passage of the Coast Guard Academy Safe-to-Report Act,” said Senator Blumenthal.

Companion legislation is led in the House of Representatives by U.S. Representative Joe Courtney (D-Conn.), who introduced the bipartisan Coast Guard Academy Safe-to-Report Parity Act in August.


  • Earlier this month, the Coast Guard established a safe-to-report policy to protect servicemembers reporting cases of sexual assault. While this policy is a positive step forward, the Coast Guard Academy Safe-to-Report Act goes further, establishing safeguards for members of the Coast Guard and Coast Guard Academy cadets who experience sexual abuse.
  • In addition, by making this policy a statutory requirement, this legislation aligns the Coast Guard with other military services that were required to implement similar policies in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2021.
  • By requiring the implementation of a safe-to-report policy, the Coast Guard Academy Safe-to-Report Act ensures that survivors cannot be punished for certain minor offenses, including drinking and violating curfew, when reporting cases of sexual abuse.


  • Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), and Katie Britt (R-Ala.) joined as cosponsors.