Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the military to recertify all 25,000 people involved in programs designed to prevent and respond to sexual assault.
The order, which also applies to the military's approximately 19,000 recruiters, must be carried out by July 1.
Hagel says the step is one among many that will be taken to fix the problem of sexual abuse and sexual harassment within every branch of the military.
At a news conference Friday with Joint Chiefs chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey, Hagel said he believes alcohol use is "a very big factor" in many cases, but there are many pieces to the problem.
Hagel said it has become clear to him since taking office in February that holding people accountable for their actions is important, but simply firing people is not a solution.
He and Dempsey spoke one day after all of the military's leadership were summoned to the White House to discuss the sexual assault problem with President Barack Obama, who has expressed impatience with the Pentagon's failure to solve it.
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