Sexual Harassment in the Australian Defence Force

Sexual Harassment in the Australian Defence Force

August 1994

ISBN 0 642 21281 3

© Commonwealth of Australia 1994

N.B. All files are in PDF format. To view or print the report, you will require the Acrobat PDF reader®, which can be downloaded free of charge from Adobe.

View the report as a single document - (PDF format) - 10,969KB

View the report as separate downloadable parts:


Introduction - (PDF format)


Chapter 1: Sexual Harassment - (PDF format)
What is sexual harassment?
Sexual assault
Sexual harassment
Women in the services-impact of change
Sexual harassment - different perceptions
The 'reasonable person' test
Community standards
Types of behaviours
Possible consequences of sexual harassment
Impact on the individual
Impact on the organisation
Who harasses whom?
Sexual harassment and management style
Sexual harassment and poor performance

Chapter 2: Sexual Harassment in the Navy - (PDF format)
Data available on sexual harassment in the Navy
How widespread is sexual harassment in the workforce generally?
Reluctance to complain
Drawing conclusions from statistical data on sexual harassment
The workplace
The nature of women's experiencesin the RAN
Who engages in sexual harassment?
How women cope
Reverse discrimination
Physical Strength

Chapter 3: Accommodation on HMAS Swan Term of Reference 1 (b) - (PDF format)
The 1992 deployments
Dr Wheat's accommodation
The accommodation of other female personnel
Modifications to HMAS Swan
Standards of accommodation for women at sea

Chapter 4: Behaviour of Officers Ashore Term of Reference 1 (c) - (PDF format)

Chapter 5: The Terms of Reference of the Board of Inquiry Term of Reference 1 (e) and 1 (d) - (PDF format)
Terms of Reference of the board
Powers of the Board of Inquiry
Complaints about the Board's procedures
Captain Mole
Lieutenant Commander Flynn
Liertenant Turner
The Board's interpretation of its terms of reference
Initial investigations at Lumut
Payment for Dr Wheat's expenses
The Board's analysis of the PR5
Court Martial
Committee Conclusion
parallel inquiry by Assistant Chief of Naval Staff - Personnel
Dr Wheat's employment
Treatment of Dr Wheat after her return to Australia

Chapter 6: Recommendations of the board of Inquiry Term of Reference 1 (a) and 1 (e) - (PDF format)
Gender issues
Appropriateness of the gender related recommendations
Sexual harassment of Dr Wheat
The Board's investigations of sexual harassment of Dr Wheat
Lieutenant Commander James
r recommendations of the Board regarding individuals and behaviour in the wardroom
Lieutenant Bartlett
Lieutenant Commander Spruce
Captain Mole
The Board's investigation of the sexual harassment of the junior sailors
Chief Petty Officer Broad
RANTEWSS team - the Board's analysis
Sexual harassment - language
Factors other than sexual harassment
Level of skills - training
Training for direct entry specialist officers
Shortage of medical officers
Selection of Personnel
Work practices
Performance appraisal
Breakdown of the divisional system
Management style
Defence instructions on sexual harassment
Unsubstantiated and false allegations

Chapter 7: Discpilinary and Administrative Action Taken - (PDF format)
ADF mechanisms for maintaining good oreder and discipline
Courts Martial
Performance Appraisals
Quarterly report
Administrative and disciplinary action taken
The censure of Captain Mole
How the decision to censure was reached
Content of the censure
Summary - responsibility for Dre Wheat's situation
Revelations in the media since BOI
Committee comment
Corporate responsibility
Impact of censure on promotion prespects
Review of censure

Chapter 8: Court Martial - Term of Reference 1 (g) - (PDF format)

Chapter 9: Intergration of Women in the Navy - Term of Reference 1 (h) - (PDF format)
Employment of Women at sea
Women in the Navy - some statistics
Actions taken in relation to the Board of Inquiry

Chapter 10: The Navy's Response to Sexual Harassment - Term of Reference 1 (i) - (PDF format)
Before the SWAN incident
Navy's actions before the Board of Inquiry
Navy's actions after the Board of Inquiry
Development of the confidential database
Operation lifeguard
Navy's pro-active strategy

Chapter 11: the Good Working Relationships Project - Term of Reference 1 (j) - (PDF format)
The good working relationship project
The GWR fact-finding study
Attitudes to change in the Navy
Implementation of GWR strategy
Management of unacceptable behaviour seminar
Other good working relationships initiatives
Good working relations advisory committee

Chapter 12: Sexual Hrassment in the Australian Defence Force - Term of Reference 2 - (PDF format)
Women in the armed services
Monitoring of sexual harassment
ADF mechanisms of monitoring sexual harassment
Incidence of sexual harassment in the Australian Defence Force
The sex ddiscrimination commissioner
Internal ADF records
Defence force ombudsman
Individual submissions to the committee
Culture of the ADF
Community attitudes
Leadership commitment
Role of senior officers
Commanding officers' responsibilites
Investigative procedures
Performance appraisal
H omosexuality
Courts martial
Intergrated military/civilian workplaces
ADF future action plan
General harassment
Sexual harassment and integration


1: Evidence received by the Senate Standing Committee - (PDF format)
2 : Integration of Women in the Navy and HMAS SWAN - Chronology of events -
(PDF format)
3: Glossary -
(PDF format)
4: Australian Defence Force Ranks and Abbreviations -
(PDF format)
5: Notes on Ranks and Positions -
(PDF format)
6: RAN Senior positions - Incumbents -
(PDF format)
7: Promulgation of Inquity within the Australian Defence Force -
(PDF format)
8: Reported Incidence of Sexual Harassment and Sexual Offences in the Australian Defence Force -
(PDF format)
9: Comparative Figures and Comparative Rates of Separation for Male and Female Officers in the ADF -
(PDF format)