Commentary

April 5, 2013

Sexual assault has no place in DOD, official says

WASHINGTON – Sexual assault has no place in the Defense Department, a senior Pentagon official said April 2, calling on the workforce to be part of the solution.

In a keynote address kicking off Aberdeen Proving Ground’s observance of National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, acting Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jessica L. Wright said sexual assault is a national issue that also affects the Defense Department’s military and civilian workforce.

The theme for this year’s observance — underscored in a message that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel sent to the Department’s workforce today is, “We own it … we’ll solve it … together.”

“Although we address sexual assault in the month of April, this is an issue that needs to be addressed every day of our lives,” Wright told an audience of service members and civilian employees.

The Defense Department is a microcosm of America, she added, where employees bring their values and how they were raised to the workforce.

“I often say if we’re in Afghanistan and we (see) something unsafe, (or) not akin to the values we have grown up with, we would tell that person to stop what they’re doing, because they’re going to affect our well-being and their well-being,” she said. “Yet when we are here in the United States, and we do something that’s not akin to … values in a social network, sometimes we have a hard time crossing that boundary and saying, ‘This affects the life of a service member or a civilian we work with, and it’s inappropriate.’”

The Defense Department doesn’t condone sexual assault, Wright said. “We don’t tell jokes of a sexual nature, we don’t condone unwanted sexual behaviors, and we clearly don’t condone sexual assault.”

Just as everyone knows people who drink a lot of coffee, exercise a great deal or are “Facebook junkies,” Wright said, everyone also knows someone who doesn’t live by the Defense Department’s values and ethos.

“I ask that if you know that person, tell (him or her) to stop it, and make sure you report bad behavior should you see it,” she said. “That’s the only way we’re going to stop it.”

Wright said she joined the military in 1975 as a member of the Women’s Army Corps, at a time when having a drink at the post club was condoned. “But in our military now, … we don’t condone drinking (or) drinking and driving. We don’t have those social things like we used to, because it’s just not who we are,” she said.

The military culture has changed radically with regard to drug and alcohol problems and racial tensions it had in the past, Wright said, adding that she doesn’t see sexual assault any differently.

“I ask each and every one of you to take back a message with you today that says, ‘Every single day, we don’t condone (sexual assault),’” she said.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Fly, fight & win! Luke plays unique role in AF mission

The mission of the Air Force is to fly, fight and win. The Air Force’s “motto,” as it was originally called, was adopted October 2010. Capt. Gregroy Bollrud of Hurlburt Field Florida, wrote, “It succinctly captures what our Air Force has been renowned for ever since its creation in 1947. Also, the specific choice of...
 
 

Wingman for life

“I look after my wingman. He looks after me. We work together. We fight together.” — Col. Gabby Gabriski, WWII ace Having a wingman has been an essential part of combat flying since the beginning. A wingman is able to watch your “6,” provide support and can offer a different perspective on a situation. These...
 
 

Chaplain’s thoughts

President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation on Oct. 23, 1863, which established Thanksgiving Day as a national observance. The proclamation highlighted the prosperity and expansion of the country even while it was engaged in civil strife. It acknowledged that no foreign country had used the civil war as an opportunity to “provoke their aggressions.” Lincoln’s...
 

 
Interstellar_7

Fly Over: ‘Big Hero 6′ and ‘Interstellar’

In theaters: ‘Big Hero 6′ It was bound to happen: when the entertainment juggernaut Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel, it was only a matter of time before a mash-up movie was produced. “Big Hero 6,” produced b...
 
 

AF needs Airmen to maintain identity

Some of us may remember playing the pool game “Marco-Polo.” Some of us may still use this game to entertain our children at the pool today. One player closes his or her eyes and repeatedly shouts out “Marco” while the other players tread water and respond “Polo.” All the while, they attempt to shift quickly...
 
 

New evaluation system calls for accountability

It seems that everyone is overly concerned with the new evaluation system the Air Force is releasing. We should ask ourselves if it is really that scary to have an assessment which fits each of us in a more realistic way. This new system is going to hurt a lot of egos when they are...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin