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New Policies Related to Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Prevention and Response on Commercial Vessels

Nov. 15, 2023 | By Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance

The James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023 introduced important updates to various laws within Title 46 of the United States Code (U.S.C.) to enhance crew safety and address sexual assault and sexual harassment. Key changes include mandated surveillance systems, crew training, reporting procedures, and master key controls on select vessels. The Coast Guard has released four policy documents to provide guidance for compliance. These changes underscore our commitment to fostering a safer and more respectful maritime environment through the elimination of sexual assault and sexual harassment from the workplace.

For more information, refer to our Maritime Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) 13-23. Also, please see MSIB 1-23 for further information on reporting sexual misconduct on U.S. vessels. A full listing of Coast Guard MSIBs may be found here.  A list of Policy Letters and Work Instructions can be found on the Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance (CG-CVC) website

If you have questions regarding implementation of these new requirements on your vessel, please contact the local Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection (OCMI).  Points of contact for your local area may be found here. For questions regarding this blog post, please contact 

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This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official publications, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These publications remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.