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July 2021 Articles

Sexual Assault Prevention Starts on Day One, Army Senior Leaders Say

07/31/2021
While leaders continue to expect a lot from their Soldiers, the Army should get “back to the basics of taking care of our people”, the Secretary of the Army Christine E. Wormuth told attendees at the recent Program Improvement Forum hosted by the Army Resilience Directorate. Wormuth and other Army leaders spoke on the importance of prevention efforts in the fight against those behaviors. “Whether it’s sexual assault/harassment, suicides, substance abuse, or other behavioral health challenges, the last 20 years have placed a lot of strain on our Army,” she said.

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Being 'Mindful' Improves Readiness, Says Director of Army Staff

07/22/2021
The Army is developing new ways to improve readiness with pilot programs now underway to add mindfulness training to help Soldiers manage stress and stay in the moment, Army leaders said recently. Mindfulness training is the practice of teaching the brain to stay in the moment and, according to the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, it offers many benefits like helping individuals relax, sleep better, become more focused and alert, lower their blood pressure and improve their relationships. For Soldiers, mindfulness training can also help reduce pain and stress related to post-deployment stress and post-traumatic stress disorder.

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DOD Takes Phased Approach to Implementing Recommendations on Sexual Assault, Harassment

07/21/2021
The Defense Department plans to move forward with all of the recommendations made by an independent review commission on sexual assault in the military. The commission's findings and 82 recommendations were made public earlier this month, and the department will move cautiously and deliberately in implementing each of them, the deputy defense secretary said.

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Army Substance Abuse Program

07/16/2021
The Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) mission is to take care of people by preventing the misuse of legal substances and the use of illicit drugs that may harm the individual, negatively impact unit cohesion and the combat readiness of the force. In July 2020 ARD published an update to AR 600-85, Army Substance Abuse Program. The new regulation reinforces the Army’s commitment to people by ensuring a ready and resilient force.

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States Partner to Provide Targeted Early Intervention to Service Members

07/13/2021
The North Dakota National Guard has partnered with the states of New Jersey and New Mexico to pilot the use of Prime For Life® and MyPrime® to provide targeted early intervention to service members who, for a known reason, are at risk of developing substance-related problems.

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101 Days of Safety: How to Make Smart Choices When Drinking This Summer

07/13/2021
Fort Drum Army Substance Abuse Program Specialist Bill Van Orman stresses the importance of being vigilant and self-aware when attending celebrations or gatherings that include alcohol. He also stresses that anytime we are impaired we are at a higher risk for making poor choices. The only low risk option is to not get impaired; the goal is to not get drunk.

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Best Practices From the Embedded Performance Expert Pilot: Part 2

07/13/2021
Part One of this series introduced the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research’s Embedded Performance Expert Quality Improvement Evaluation, an effort to evaluate the embedment of Performance Experts within units at the brigade and battalion levels. Based on interviews with EPEs and unit leaders, the WRAIR evaluation team identified best practices for embedding PEs. This article highlights methods for promoting a successful start to the embedment.

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Monthly ARD Webinars Focus on Strengthening Teams, Individuals

07/13/2021
“What do we do here?”
“How does what you do help us do that?”
Best-selling author and business leadership expert Dr. David Burkus encouraged April’s ARD Outreach Webinar participants to ask their subordinates these questions as part of setting conditions for a strong, successful, and cohesive team. Burkus shared that to create a strong organization, members need to understand the mission, feel their contributions are valued, and have a share in the team’s success.

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National Guard and Reserve Members are Eligible to Access Vet Center Resources

07/13/2021
Although Vet Centers have been a longtime resource for Veterans; Active Duty, National Guard and Reserve service members may not be aware they are also eligible to use the service. Vet Centers provide outreach and support including individual, group, marriage, and Family counseling), financial, housing and life coping skills counseling, resource referrals and care coordination through their Readjustment Counseling Service.

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Helping Military Kids Rebuild Social Connections After the Pandemic

07/13/2021
Amanda Dizinno, Master Resilience Trainer and Assistant Director of Child and Youth Services at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey, used the shutdown as an opportunity to reevaluate and revamp CYS processes to help make the transition back to the facility as smooth as possible. When the shutdown occurred, Dizinno’s goal was to provide as much support as possible to Families in the community.

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25th Infantry Division Artillery Focuses on 'People First' Through Leader Development, Building Trust, and Instilling Commitment to the Army Values

07/09/2021
The 25th Infantry Division Artillery held a four-day series of leader development, team-oriented, and Soldier-development events for the Brigade’s “People First Week” from June 21-24. The week was designed to “certify” leaders in how to care for Soldiers and Families, and advance ongoing initiatives to improve quality of life for the members of the “Tropic Thunder Ohana.” The events were intended to build cohesion and trust, generate deeper internalization of the Army’s ethics, and reaffirm the 25th Infantry Division Artillery's organizational values.

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Independent Review Commission Recommendations on Countering Sexual Assault in the Military

07/2/2021
The department released the Secretary of Defense’s guidance on, and the recommendations from, the Independent Review Commission (IRC) on Sexual Assault in the Military. The IRC made 82 recommendations in four priority areas: accountability; prevention; climate and culture; and victim care and support. Key themes of the report recognized both strengths and areas for improvement; recognizing dedicated leaders and a desire to engage; and emphasizing the need to promote climates of dignity and respect, investing in knowledgeable sexual assault responders and the strong need for proper resources and training.

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President Biden Releases Statement on the Results of the Independent Review Commission on Military Sexual Assault

07/2/2021
President Biden has released his statement on the Results of the Independent Review Commission on Military Sexual Assault showing support of Secretary Austin’s announcement that he is accepting the core recommendations put forward by the Independent Review Commission on Military Sexual Assault (IRC), including removing the investigation and prosecution of sexual assault from the chain of command and creating highly specialized units to handle these cases and related crimes.

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