Category: Health, Wealth & Safety

What We Do Is Hard; It’s OK to Ask for Help

By Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith

Suicide is one of the most complex problems we face, one that has a tremendously detrimental effect on our Navy—and one that, as a self-inflicted casualty, is preventable. We’ve tragically lost Sailors, our teammates and friends, who felt that the only option they had left was a terrible one—one that ended their pain, and yet in doing so inflicted a heavy and interminable burden of confusion and sadness on those of us who remained behind.  

To paint suicide as a simple and straightforward issue would be a gross oversimplification; there are many, disparate reasons someone may make that decision for themselves. Short-term issues that seem insurmountable, or longer-term feelings of loneliness, not belonging or being wanted can make suicide seem like an attractive option. Chronic pain or a perceived hopelessness that makes fighting for a better tomorrow seem futile, perhaps seeking to unburden loved ones or escape from a painful situation. To the one suffering, it’s difficult to understand the actual impacts for those destined to live with a chasm in our hearts, in our units and in our lives—with unanswered questions and a long list of “what ifs.” That is equally difficult.     

So while there may not be one simple reason that we can pursue, we need to do something to change our culture and address this issue in a more substantive way. Feelings of depression and self-harm do not respect rank, and factors like financial health or a lofty leadership title does nothing to inoculate against the ache of loneliness or living in a state of desolation. Hopelessness can stalk anyone, whether they live in the heart of a major city, are stationed on a destroyer or serve in a remote or austere location. We cannot take for granted, based on anything other than a conversation and how we interact with each other, that someone is “ok”—despite appearing to have everything going for them—just as we cannot ignore someone who is clearly struggling with the circumstances of their life. Most of us will find ourselves at risk at some point in our lives, and it is in those moments when we need to connect that a connection must be made.

One common thread seems to be clear: Connecting to one another in meaningful ways works against feelings central to wanting to leave unexpectedly. Finding ways to check on each other—not like you’re fulfilling the day’s errands but in a truly authentic and meaningful way—is a great start. Embracing our shipmates as needed and beloved members of our Navy family: that is something you and I can do, or continue to do, in order to really make a difference. Talk to your Sailors, but also talk to your boss. The burden of leadership can often be a heavy one; it’s ok to ask your boss how she or he is doing, because we all should be genuinely concerned for the welfare of the team, senior and junior alike.  

Share your strength, and draw strength from your shipmates. Reinforce those concepts that our teams rely on as binding elements—trust, honesty, transparency and compassion—which will engender a sense of belonging that will combat the dangerous feelings of isolation. Our Sailors must be reminded, and must know through and through, that we don’t just care for each other; no, we rely on absolutely and need each other to face the rigors of combat, to survive and return home to our loved ones. 

We each swore an oath to face the many determined enemies of our American way of life, and they are indeed formidable. For the Sailor who may be in that place of loneliness, I tell you, shipmate, that I have been you—as many have been, whether they will admit it or not. I would implore you to consider how much your family and your friends need you, and just as importantly how much your shipmates need you in the days, weeks and years to come. 

War will continue to challenge us, and not everyone who sails into battle will survive; you may be the reason that a ship returns victorious, or a squadron returns stateside as a complete unit. You could be the reason a submarine was able to navigate home after conducting a harrowing mission that, as far as the rest of the world is concerned, was never there. You are needed, you are necessary, and I hope all of us can stand together to face whatever comes next. What we do is hard; it’s ok not to be ok, but it’s not ok not to ask for help. If you’re not in a great place, come to us and let us help you get back to a mindset where you can again take your place in the fight.

As your shipmates, we will be looking for you, but you don’t have to wait for us to discern that you are the one who must take a knee for a time. Help us, so we can help you, and then we will get after the enemy—together.

CNO Adm. Gilday: Small Steps Save Lives

By Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday

September is Suicide Prevention Month, and while we should talk about this subject year-round, it is important to me that we have a frank conversation about this right now.

Suicide is a tragedy that extends beyond individual Sailors. Every death by suicide — whether it be uniformed Sailors, Navy Civilians, or families — affects our entire Navy family, and it is extremely troubling to me that suicide continues to be a leading cause of death in our Navy. 

We all go through challenges and stressors that can be difficult to talk about… But no one should feel so isolated or overwhelmed by events that they consider suicide.

That is why it is important that we talk to our shipmates … really talk to them.  Ask them how they’re doing and actively listen. Talking about our challenges, whether they’re operational, social, or psychological, is one small act we can do every day to make all of us better. It fosters a climate of trust and encourages Sailors to ask for help in their time of need. 

We must build that trust up and down the chain of command to ensure Sailors feel comfortable reaching out to their leadership and shipmates. 

Let me be clear. There cannot be BYSTANDERS in our Navy. That is why it’s so important that WE ALL take the time to look for potential warning signs. We need all hands on deck for this.

Right now, in your division, your department or your command, there is someone that needs your help, who is struggling with stress or having thoughts of suicide.

Sometimes the signs are verbal, like a Sailor casually saying that they feel like they have no purpose or feel as though they don’t belong. There may also be behavioral signs, like increased alcohol use or other substance misuse, withdrawing from usual activities, or uncharacteristic rage or anger. 

Look closely for these signs when your shipmate is experiencing a combination of multiple stressors, including:

  • Relationship problems
  • Personal or professional loss
  • Recent career transitions
  • Disciplinary / legal issues and financial strain
  • The harmful effects of prolonged stress and chronic sleep deprivation

With many suicides, shipmates saw signs of distress but weren’t able to recognize them as indicators of suicide risk. Trust your gut and ACT (Ask, Care, Treat). Use intrusive leadership, look your shipmates in the eyes, and ask, “Are you okay?” 

I expect our leaders to build and support Command Resilience Teams. Along with suicide prevention coordinators, use your chaplains and embedded mental health providers. I want our leaders to set a tone within their commands where Sailors feel comfortable and have the courage to ask for help without fear of judgement or consequences. That way when Sailors do seek help, they do so confidently, knowing they’ll receive the support and resources they need.

While we have strengthened our efforts through initiatives like “Every Sailor Every Day,” along with the Sailor Assistance and Intercept for Life program, or SAIL, we have to sustain momentum beyond a singular conversation, momentary action or the creation of a new policy.

Help is always available. Call the Military Crisis Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), Military Crisis Line or text 838255 for free confidential support 24/7.

Be there for every Sailor, every day.

NORFOLK (Sept. 13, 2019) Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Paul Kopel and Peg Smith, health promotions staff members at the Branch Health Clinic (BHC) at Naval Station Norfolk, set up a display of 79 pairs of boots to remember the 79 Sailors who were lost to suicide in 2018 and to raise awareness for suicide prevention. “Have you seen the boots?” is an initiative to identify and remember Sailors lost to suicide and to identify what the Navy community is missing when it comes to this tragedy. (U.S. Navy photo by Seaman Imani N. Daniels/Released)

SPECIAL REPORT: HURRICANE DORIAN

Hurricane Dorian slammed into the Abacos Islands in the Bahamas Sept. 2 as a powerful Category 5 hurricane, with winds up to 185 mph and gusts about 220 mph. As reports show extreme devastation in the Bahamas, Dorian has been moving closer to Florida, potentially nearing Georgia and South Carolina. The storm has weakened since hitting the Bahamas but it’s still dangerous.

For the U.S. Navy, safety and security of personnel and families is the top priority. Navy installations, Navy Recruiting Stations and Navy Operational Support Centers are getting prepared for the arrival of the storm. The Navy also has units in a “prepared to deploy” status should the Northern Command request support for response and relief efforts.

Follow this blog for frequent news updates, videos and images showing the latest efforts of the Navy to brace for Dorian. For more images, visit our feature gallery

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ATLANTIC OCEAN (Sept. 4, 2019) A GOES 16 infrared satellite image of the Atlantic Ocean shows Hurricane Dorian at 1:00 a.m. EDT, Sept. 4, 2019, as a Category 2 hurricane with sustained winds of 110 mph moving northwest at 6 mph near Daytona Beach, Florida. Dorian is expected to maintain its current intensity through Thursday and move northward along the Florida coast toward Georgia and the Carolinas. (U.S. Navy photo via Naval Research Laboratory/Released)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Overhead view of a row of damaged structures in the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Views of the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) A line of MH-60R Seahawk helicopters evacuate from Naval Station Mayport as ordered by, Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic, after the setting of Sortie Condition Alpha ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. (Official U.S. Navy photo/Released)
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (Sept. 1, 2019) Sailors secure U.S. Navy MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters after arriving at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, from Naval Air Station Jacksonville and Naval Station Mayport, Florida, Sept. 1, 2019. The helicopters evacuated from the Jacksonville area in advance of Hurricane Dorian. In addition to the helicopters, Maxwell AFB is serving as an Incident Support Base for Federal Emergency Management Agency and Defense Logistics Agency personnel and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Billy Birchfield/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport, Aug. 30, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at homeport conducting a maintenance availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Larry Lockett Jr./Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut (DDG 99) departs Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) heave in a line as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie on Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) gets underway from Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Alana Langdon/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla (Aug 29, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport August 29, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at her homeport conducting Chief of Naval Operations Maintenance Availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Travis Baley/Released)
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News Stories

2nd Fleet Ships, Aircraft Depart Dorian’s Path; Installations Continue Preparations

NORFOLK, Virginia (NNS) — Hampton Roads-based ships and aircraft are leaving the area today, as Hurricane Dorian is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the Mid-Atlantic coast. Read more on Navy.mil

Navy Prepares for Hurricane Dorian in Hampton Roads

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) — Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet ordered all U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the Hampton Roads area to be prepared to transit to safety within 24 hours, if necessary, as a precautionary measure due to the approach of Hurricane Dorian, thereby setting Sortie Condition Bravo. Read more on Navy.mil

Maxwell Opens for Hurricane Support

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Alabama (NNS) — At the request of the Department of Homeland Security, through U.S. Northern Command, Maxwell Air Force Base opened Aug. 29 as an Incident Support Base in advance of Hurricane Dorian. Read more on Navy.mil

Hurricane Dorian: Evacuation of Military Personnel and their Families

NAS JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) — As Dorian progresses toward the Southeast United States, many Navy Sailors and civilians are wondering when they should evacuate. The simple answer is that the parent command must determine whether personnel and family members should evacuate. Read more on Navy.mil

 

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Videos

Helicopters Evacuate Naval Station Mayport Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters assigned to Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 48 as they prepare to depart Naval Station Mayport. Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic ordered aircraft at Naval Station Mayport to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian. Dorian is expected to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast.  

 

Ships Depart Naval Station Mayport, Florida Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Footage of ships homeported at Naval Station Mayport undergoing preparations to sortie as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance.

 

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SPECIAL REPORT: HURRICANE DORIAN

Hurricane Dorian slammed into the Abacos Islands in the Bahamas Sept. 2 as a powerful Category 5 hurricane, with winds up to 185 mph and gusts about 220 mph. As reports show extreme devastation in the Bahamas, Dorian has been moving closer to Florida, potentially nearing Georgia and South Carolina. The storm has weakened since hitting the Bahamas but it’s still dangerous.

For the U.S. Navy, safety and security of personnel and families is the top priority. Navy installations, Navy Recruiting Stations and Navy Operational Support Centers are getting prepared for the arrival of the storm. The Navy also has units in a “prepared to deploy” status should the Northern Command request support for response and relief efforts.

Follow this blog for frequent news updates, videos and images showing the latest efforts of the Navy to brace for Dorian. For more images, visit our feature gallery

Top Images

Next Prev
ATLANTIC OCEAN (Sept. 4, 2019) A GOES 16 infrared satellite image of the Atlantic Ocean shows Hurricane Dorian at 1:00 a.m. EDT, Sept. 4, 2019, as a Category 2 hurricane with sustained winds of 110 mph moving northwest at 6 mph near Daytona Beach, Florida. Dorian is expected to maintain its current intensity through Thursday and move northward along the Florida coast toward Georgia and the Carolinas. (U.S. Navy photo via Naval Research Laboratory/Released)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Overhead view of a row of damaged structures in the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Views of the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) A line of MH-60R Seahawk helicopters evacuate from Naval Station Mayport as ordered by, Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic, after the setting of Sortie Condition Alpha ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. (Official U.S. Navy photo/Released)
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (Sept. 1, 2019) Sailors secure U.S. Navy MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters after arriving at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, from Naval Air Station Jacksonville and Naval Station Mayport, Florida, Sept. 1, 2019. The helicopters evacuated from the Jacksonville area in advance of Hurricane Dorian. In addition to the helicopters, Maxwell AFB is serving as an Incident Support Base for Federal Emergency Management Agency and Defense Logistics Agency personnel and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Billy Birchfield/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport, Aug. 30, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at homeport conducting a maintenance availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Larry Lockett Jr./Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut (DDG 99) departs Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) heave in a line as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie on Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) gets underway from Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Alana Langdon/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla (Aug 29, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport August 29, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at her homeport conducting Chief of Naval Operations Maintenance Availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Travis Baley/Released)
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News Stories

2nd Fleet Ships, Aircraft Depart Dorian’s Path; Installations Continue Preparations

NORFOLK, Virginia (NNS) — Hampton Roads-based ships and aircraft are leaving the area today, as Hurricane Dorian is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the Mid-Atlantic coast. Read more on Navy.mil

Navy Prepares for Hurricane Dorian in Hampton Roads

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) — Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet ordered all U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the Hampton Roads area to be prepared to transit to safety within 24 hours, if necessary, as a precautionary measure due to the approach of Hurricane Dorian, thereby setting Sortie Condition Bravo. Read more on Navy.mil

Maxwell Opens for Hurricane Support

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Alabama (NNS) — At the request of the Department of Homeland Security, through U.S. Northern Command, Maxwell Air Force Base opened Aug. 29 as an Incident Support Base in advance of Hurricane Dorian. Read more on Navy.mil

Hurricane Dorian: Evacuation of Military Personnel and their Families

NAS JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) — As Dorian progresses toward the Southeast United States, many Navy Sailors and civilians are wondering when they should evacuate. The simple answer is that the parent command must determine whether personnel and family members should evacuate. Read more on Navy.mil

 

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Videos

Helicopters Evacuate Naval Station Mayport Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters assigned to Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 48 as they prepare to depart Naval Station Mayport. Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic ordered aircraft at Naval Station Mayport to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian. Dorian is expected to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast.  

 

Ships Depart Naval Station Mayport, Florida Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Footage of ships homeported at Naval Station Mayport undergoing preparations to sortie as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance.

 

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SPECIAL REPORT: HURRICANE DORIAN

Hurricane Dorian slammed into the Abacos Islands in the Bahamas Sept. 2 as a powerful Category 5 hurricane, with winds up to 185 mph and gusts about 220 mph. As reports show extreme devastation in the Bahamas, Dorian has been moving closer to Florida, potentially nearing Georgia and South Carolina. The storm has weakened since hitting the Bahamas but it’s still dangerous.

For the U.S. Navy, safety and security of personnel and families is the top priority. Navy installations, Navy Recruiting Stations and Navy Operational Support Centers are getting prepared for the arrival of the storm. The Navy also has units in a “prepared to deploy” status should the Northern Command request support for response and relief efforts.

Follow this blog for frequent news updates, videos and images showing the latest efforts of the Navy to brace for Dorian. For more images, visit our feature gallery

Top Images

Next Prev
NORFOLK (Sept. 4, 2019) The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) gets underway from Naval Station Norfolk after Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet ordered U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the area to depart, Sept. 4, 2019, ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Joshua M. Tolbert/Released)
NORFOLK (Sept. 4, 2019) The San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS New York (LPD 21) departs Naval Station Norfolk after Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet ordered U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the area to depart, Sept. 4, 2019, ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Gary A. Prill/Released)
ATLANTIC OCEAN (Sept. 4, 2019) A GOES 16 infrared satellite image of the Atlantic Ocean shows Hurricane Dorian at 1:00 a.m. EDT, Sept. 4, 2019, as a Category 2 hurricane with sustained winds of 110 mph moving northwest at 6 mph near Daytona Beach, Florida. Dorian is expected to maintain its current intensity through Thursday and move northward along the Florida coast toward Georgia and the Carolinas. (U.S. Navy photo via Naval Research Laboratory/Released)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Overhead view of a row of damaged structures in the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)
BAHAMAS (Sept. 3, 2019) Views of the Bahamas from a Coast Guard Elizabeth City C-130 aircraft after Hurricane Dorian shifts north Sept. 3, 2019. Hurricane Dorian made landfall Saturday and intensified into Sunday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Adam Stanton.)

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) A line of MH-60R Seahawk helicopters evacuate from Naval Station Mayport as ordered by, Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic, after the setting of Sortie Condition Alpha ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. (Official U.S. Navy photo/Released)
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (Sept. 1, 2019) Sailors secure U.S. Navy MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters after arriving at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, from Naval Air Station Jacksonville and Naval Station Mayport, Florida, Sept. 1, 2019. The helicopters evacuated from the Jacksonville area in advance of Hurricane Dorian. In addition to the helicopters, Maxwell AFB is serving as an Incident Support Base for Federal Emergency Management Agency and Defense Logistics Agency personnel and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Billy Birchfield/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport, Aug. 30, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at homeport conducting a maintenance availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Larry Lockett Jr./Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut (DDG 99) departs Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) heave in a line as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie on Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) gets underway from Naval Station Mayport as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders all U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic Ocean where they are best postured for storm avoidance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Alana Langdon/Released)
MAYPORT, Fla (Aug 29, 2019) Sailors assigned to the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) make preparations for Hurricane Dorian at Naval Station Mayport August 29, 2019. Iwo Jima is currently at her homeport conducting Chief of Naval Operations Maintenance Availability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Travis Baley/Released)
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News Stories

Navy Evacuates Five North Carolina Counties, Warns Units Statewide to Expect High Winds (Sept. 4, 2019)

NORFOLK, Virginia (NNS) — The Navy issued an emergency evacuation order Sept. 4 for all Navy personnel and dependents in five North Carolina counties, in advance of the arrival of high winds and heavy rain expected from Hurricane Dorian. Read more on Navy.mil

2nd Fleet Ships, Aircraft Depart Dorian’s Path; Installations Continue Preparations (Sept. 4, 2019)

NORFOLK, Virginia (NNS) — Hampton Roads-based ships and aircraft are leaving the area today, as Hurricane Dorian is forecast to bring high winds and heavy rain to the Mid-Atlantic coast. Read more on Navy.mil

Navy Prepares for Hurricane Dorian in Hampton Roads (Sept. 3, 2019)

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) — Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet ordered all U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the Hampton Roads area to be prepared to transit to safety within 24 hours, if necessary, as a precautionary measure due to the approach of Hurricane Dorian, thereby setting Sortie Condition Bravo. Read more on Navy.mil

Maxwell Opens for Hurricane Support (Sept. 3, 2019)

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Alabama (NNS) — At the request of the Department of Homeland Security, through U.S. Northern Command, Maxwell Air Force Base opened Aug. 29 as an Incident Support Base in advance of Hurricane Dorian. Read more on Navy.mil

Hurricane Dorian: Evacuation of Military Personnel and their Families (Sept. 2, 2019)

NAS JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) — As Dorian progresses toward the Southeast United States, many Navy Sailors and civilians are wondering when they should evacuate. The simple answer is that the parent command must determine whether personnel and family members should evacuate. Read more on Navy.mil

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Videos

Ships Depart Naval Station Norfolk Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

NORFOLK (Sept. 4, 2019) U.S. Sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) depart Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, with other ships

2nd Fleet Orders Ships to Sea ahead of Hurricane Dorian

NORFOLK (Sept. 4, 2019) Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships and aircraft in the area to sortie on Sept. 4 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rains to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance.

Helicopters Evacuate Naval Station Mayport Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

MAYPORT, Fla. (Sept. 1, 2019) MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters assigned to Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 48 as they prepare to depart Naval Station Mayport. Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic ordered aircraft at Naval Station Mayport to sortie ahead of Hurricane Dorian. Dorian is expected to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast.  

Ships Depart Naval Station Mayport, Florida Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2019) Footage of ships homeported at Naval Station Mayport undergoing preparations to sortie as Commander, U.S. 4th Fleet orders U.S. Navy ships homeported in the area to sortie Aug. 30 ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is forecasted to bring high winds and heavy rain to the East Coast. Ships are being directed to areas in the Atlantic where they are best postured for storm avoidance.

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Department of Navy, SUNY Team up Against Sexual Assault/Sexual Harassment

Lt. Cmdr. Robert Carr
DON-SAPRO PAO

The Department of the Navy is hosting its first joint Regional Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment, in partnership with the State University of New York, on September 5, 2019 in Manhattan.

The one-day conference follows the inaugural National Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies, held at the United States Naval Academy in April. The event was comprised of leaders and experts from public, private, and government-run educational institutions who shared best practices to reduce the prevalence of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

The Honorable Richard V. Spencer, Secretary of the Navy, will join SUNY Chancellor Dr. Kristina M. Johnson in opening the event, geared toward prevention strategies, as well as program evaluation and data collection. More than 250 attendees have registered for the Discussion.

Secretary Spencer said sexual assault and sexual harassment endangers everyone, both inside the military and out. “We all have the responsibility, and the capability, to confront this behavior,” Spencer said. “I’m going to take advantage of every opportunity I can to change the culture and win this fight.”

All four military academy leaders will join the Secretary at the Regional Discussion, and will participate in a Leadership Forum panel. This panel will include Rear Adm. William G. Kelly, superintendent of the United States Coast Guard Academy; Lt. Gen. Jay B. Silveria, superintendent of the United States Air Force Academy; Vice Adm. Sean S. Buck, superintendent of the United States Naval Academy and Lt. Gen. Darryl A. Williams, superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point; as well as Rear Adm. Michael Alfultis, president of SUNY Maritime College.

Keeping with the regional conversation, East Coast experts in sexual assault and sexual harassment prevention programs will also lead panel discussions at the conference, including Dr. Nathan Galbreath, deputy director of the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office in Alexandria, Virginia; Elizabeth Brady, project director of sexual and Interpersonal Violence Prevention at SUNY; Dr. Sarah McMahon, director, Center of Violence Against Women and Children at Rutgers University in New Jersey; and Sharyn Potter, executive director at Prevention Innovations Research Center at the University of New Hampshire.

Dr. Elizabeth (Elise) P. VanWinkle, executive director of the Office of Force Resiliency for the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, will lead a keynote panel, “Promoting a Culture of Change through Data.” She will discuss the role of data and how an in-depth understanding of metrics can guide efforts to eliminate sexual assault and sexual harassment from America’s colleges, universities and service academies.

Melissa Cohen, Director of the Department of the Navy’s Sexual Assault and Prevention Office, said a regional focus will allow the military and academic community to narrow the scope of joint efforts, primarily through shared experiences on topics like data collection and ways to effectively measure prevention programs, and find meaningful, effective solutions together.

“We want to sustain the momentum we have created with the academic community, who share our desire to end sexual assault and sexual harassment on our nation’s campuses, military service academies and within our communities,” she said. “At this event, we can learn from each other, and work together to eliminate these criminal and destructive behaviors. We must give our focused attention in this topic, and be willing to try new approaches to stop sexual assault and sexual harassment. We’ve been asked to continue the conversation, and we are responding.”

Meanwhile, U.S. Senator Martha McSally has expressed her gratitude for continuing the national discussion on sexual assault ahead of the upcoming first joint Regional Discussion.

For more information, contact Lt. Cmdr. Robert Carr, DON-SAPRO Public Affairs Officer, at 703-693-2954 or carr.robert@navy.mil.

Department of Navy, SUNY Team up Against Sexual Assault/Sexual Harassment

Lt. Cmdr. Robert Carr
DON-SAPRO PAO

The Department of the Navy is hosting its first joint Regional Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment, in partnership with the State University of New York, on September 5, 2019 in Manhattan.

The one-day conference follows the inaugural National Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s Colleges, Universities and Service Academies, held at the United States Naval Academy in April. The event was comprised of leaders and experts from public, private, and government-run educational institutions who shared best practices to reduce the prevalence of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

The Honorable Richard V. Spencer, Secretary of the Navy, will join SUNY Chancellor Dr. Kristina M. Johnson in opening the event, geared toward prevention strategies, as well as program evaluation and data collection. More than 250 attendees have registered for the Discussion.

Secretary Spencer said sexual assault and sexual harassment endangers everyone, both inside the military and out. “We all have the responsibility, and the capability, to confront this behavior,” Spencer said. “I’m going to take advantage of every opportunity I can to change the culture and win this fight.”

 

All four military academy leaders will join the Secretary at the Regional Discussion, and will participate in a Leadership Forum panel. This panel will include Rear Adm. William G. Kelly, superintendent of the United States Coast Guard Academy; Lt. Gen. Jay B. Silveria, superintendent of the United States Air Force Academy; Vice Adm. Sean S. Buck, superintendent of the United States Naval Academy and Lt. Gen. Darryl A. Williams, superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point; as well as Rear Adm. Michael Alfultis, president of SUNY Maritime College.

Keeping with the regional conversation, East Coast experts in sexual assault and sexual harassment prevention programs will also lead panel discussions at the conference, including Dr. Nathan Galbreath, deputy director of the Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office in Alexandria, Virginia; Elizabeth Brady, project director of sexual and Interpersonal Violence Prevention at SUNY; Dr. Sarah McMahon, director, Center of Violence Against Women and Children at Rutgers University in New Jersey; and Sharyn Potter, executive director at Prevention Innovations Research Center at the University of New Hampshire.

Dr. Elizabeth (Elise) P. VanWinkle, executive director of the Office of Force Resiliency for the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, will lead a keynote panel, “Promoting a Culture of Change through Data.” She will discuss the role of data and how an in-depth understanding of metrics can guide efforts to eliminate sexual assault and sexual harassment from America’s colleges, universities and service academies.

Melissa Cohen, Director of the Department of the Navy’s Sexual Assault and Prevention Office, said a regional focus will allow the military and academic community to narrow the scope of joint efforts, primarily through shared experiences on topics like data collection and ways to effectively measure prevention programs, and find meaningful, effective solutions together.

“We want to sustain the momentum we have created with the academic community, who share our desire to end sexual assault and sexual harassment on our nation’s campuses, military service academies and within our communities,” she said. “At this event, we can learn from each other, and work together to eliminate these criminal and destructive behaviors. We must give our focused attention in this topic, and be willing to try new approaches to stop sexual assault and sexual harassment. We’ve been asked to continue the conversation, and we are responding.”

 

For more information, contact Lt. Cmdr. Robert Carr, DON-SAPRO Public Affairs Officer, at 703-693-2954 or carr.robert@navy.mil.

Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month 2019: Make the Commitment

By Rear Adm. Philip E. Sobeck
Director, 21st Century Sailor, N17, OPNAV

Throughout the month of April, the Navy, along with the rest of our Nation, is observing Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month.

As we continue to shift our collective focus from awareness to prevention, it’s important that we’re able to distinguish between awareness, risk reduction and primary prevention. Both awareness and risk reduction can be tools to aid in stopping sexual violence, but primary prevention is the approach that looks at the bigger picture. Through primary prevention, we can look at the culture, norms, attitudes and beliefs that create an environment where sexual violence is permitted and we can begin eliminating and reducing the factors that perpetuate sexual violence to keep it from happening in the first place. This is where I believe each of us can make a commitment to do better for our shipmates.

Collectively, and at all levels, we must encourage positive behaviors by recognizing acts that contribute to a supportive command climate. We must commit to possess the courage necessary to conduct ourselves with respect for our fellow Sailors. It’s up to all of us to target destructive behaviors with active prevention and create healthy norms and communities for our One Navy Team.

My challenge to you is to take some time and really think about this. How will you ‘Make the Commitment’?

Take a few minutes and listen to my SAAPM-focused podcast.

 

Follow this page for updates during the Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month.
Also follow Navy Live blog coverage of the National Discussion on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at America’s colleges and universities. Secretaries of the Navy, the Army, and the Air Force will host the event April 4-5 at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.

It Starts Now: Addressing Issues for Sailors and Families Living in Government and Public Private Venture Housing

Follow this blog to keep an eye on actions the U.S. Navy is taking to address the housing issues faced by Sailors and their families who live in government and public private venture (PPV) housing.

NAVADMIN 043/19, released Feb. 23 by Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) John Richardson and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Russell Smith, stated that every Sailor residing in PPV or government housing will be afforded an opportunity for a visit from their command at their residence no later than April 15, 2019. The visits are to be strictly voluntary and by invitation only. The purpose of these visits is to raise Navy awareness of family living conditions, allow command leadership to personally observe any issues affecting the home, and understand any actions being taken to address them. If a problem is found, the visits serve as an opportunity to help Sailors and their families resolve the problem.

Just three days after the release of the NAVADMIN, CNO John Richardson and MCPON Russell Smith held a Facebook Live All-Hands Call where they both reiterated the information stated in NAVADMIN 043/19 to the audience and took questions directly regarding housing, and what action the Navy is taking to correct those issues head on.

 

WASHINGTON (Feb. 26, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Russell Smith and Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John Richardson participate in a Facebook Live all-hands call. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

 

MCPON Russell Smith went Feb. 27, to the the U.S. Capitol to testify to Congress about military personnel policies and military family readiness, and once again spoke on the issues with housing and what the Navy is doing to identify and correct them in the immediate future.

 

WASHINGTON (February 27, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith departs the Russell Senate Building near the U.S. Capitol after testifying on military personnel policies and military family readiness during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel. Smith shared testimonies that advocated for child care, housing, and Sailor 2025 initiatives. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

 

During a fleet engagement trip in March to visit with forward deployed Sailors, MCPON Russell Smith took time to inspect base housing and ensure it is adequate for the Sailors and their families. MCPON Smith set a precedence that this issue needs to be immediately addressed, and direct action needs to be taken from the highest leadership on down to the deck-plates.

 

ROTA, Spain (March 11, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Russell Smith observes the condition of military housing on Naval Station Rota. Smith visited Rota, Spain for a fleet engagement to answer questions, collect feedback, and thank Sailors for serving forward in support of U.S national security interests in Europe and Africa. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

 

ROTA, Spain (March 11, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith observes the conditions of the housing on Naval Station Rota. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

 

ROTA, Spain (March 11, 2019) Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON)Russell Smith observes the condition of military housing at Naval Station Rota, Spain. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Sarah Villegas/Released)

 

Follow this page for continuing coverage.

 

Maintaining Trust of Our Sailors and Families Residing in Public Private Venture and Government Housing

From Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith

Trust and confidence are the foundational bedrock upon which effective command rests. These principles are directly tied to our mission; if we lose the trust of our Sailors, Marines and their families, if they are disconnected or distracted, the entire team suffers. The Sailors and Marines in our care must be confident that when they bring a problem to their chain of command – preferably to their division officer and their division chief – their command leadership will advocate tirelessly on their behalf.

We are facing an urgent issue affecting not only the trust and confidence of our Sailors and their families, but also their health, safety and well-being. As we have discovered, in some cases the condition of our government and public private venture family housing aboard our installations is not where it should be. Our Sailors and their families deserve safe, quality living quarters and commands must advocate for our Sailors and their families. To that end, we are prioritizing efforts to better understand our Sailors’ living conditions in on-base government family and PPV housing, to ensure that as residents, they are provided with the quality of life they have earned and deserve.Our Sailors and their families deserve safe, quality living quarters and commands must advocate for our Sailors and their families.

What went wrong? The government role in the privatized partnership arrangement has become too passive, leaving the day-to-day operation of the housing program to the residents and the private partners. We need to re-engage, especially at the command level, to advocate for our Sailors. CNIC, with support from OPNAV and NAVFAC, is on the job, already engaged in actions that will increase oversight of the partners, introduce improved quality assurance of the housing operations, follow-up on issues, add feedback mechanisms after trouble calls are closed out, focus on improved customer service, and begin a robust series of resident engagements ranging from email and social media outreach, town halls, and home visits by invitation. These efforts will be supplemented by command action on behalf of our Sailors and their families: 100 percent contact with all of your Sailors to invite them to specifically share their housing situation, experiences and unresolved issues. They may choose to decline these conversations, and they must not be pushed or pressured. During these conversations, for those in PPV or government housing, commands will offer to visit their residence if they desire. But visit or not, 100 percent of PPV residents will be engaged by their chain of command to ensure we understand their situation.

No later than April 15, 2019, every Sailor residing in PPV or government housing will be afforded an opportunity for a visit from their command at their residence. The purpose of these visits is threefold:

  • to raise our Navy awareness of family living conditions
  • to personally observe any issues affecting the home and to understand any actions being taken to address them
  • if a problem is found, to help your Sailor and their family get the problem resolved. In short, the purpose of the visit is to be their advocate.

This is not an inspection program; visits are to be strictly voluntary, by invitation only, and executed in accordance with the process set forth below.

Every Sailor with a PPV or government residence will be personally asked by their division officer if they would like to schedule a time for a visit from leaders in their command, ideally their division chief and division officer, to put eyes on any problems that the Sailor and their family are experiencing. It will be made clear to the Sailor that allowing the visit is purely voluntary and there will be no negative ramifications should either the Sailor or the Sailor’s family member decline a visit. Sailors and families will have an opportunity to ask any questions about the visit. If Sailors and families agree to a visit, a two-person team, ideally the Sailor’s division officer and division chief, will conduct the home visit. During the visit, command leadership will discuss how any problems are being resolved. The discussion should include the Sailor and all other adult family members living in the residence, provided the family member desires to participate.

For officers in PPV or government housing desiring a visit, use a similar approach, with at least one of the visiting team being senior to that of the officer whose residence will be visited (e.g., the respective department head for a division officer).

Finally, the command will vigorously assist families to get problems fixed, using existing procedures. If the Sailor declines a visit, the division officer will offer to discuss any housing issues with the Sailor or their family members by phone. In taking these steps, we will enhance understanding between the command and each Sailor and their family.

... the command will vigorously assist families to get problems fixed ...

Each team will consist of officers and/or chief petty officers only. In general, the most appropriate approach will be visits conducted by division officers and divisional leading chief petty officers. The uniform for the visit will be determined by the unit commanding officer. A minimum of one day prior to the scheduled visit, the senior member of the visit team will call or meet with the Sailor (or adult family member, if deployed) to be visited in order to confirm the time and date of the home visit.

At the beginning of the visit, the purpose of the visit will be explained to both Sailor and family and any datasheet used to record the information gathered during the visit will be shown to both. It is important to note that these visits are not inspections; they are by invitation of the residents and specifically intended to allow residents to raise concerns. The Sailor and family may end the visit at any time and for any reason. If at any time during the visit, the team believes that the visit is unfolding in an unhelpful way, the team leader will end the visit and report back to the unit commander. Before departing the residence, the visit team will offer to address any issues raised during the visit and to commit to following up on the issue with the Sailor. For instances where a Sailor reveals issues in PPV or government housing but declines a visit, the command will assist the Sailor by contacting the installation commanding officer, executive officer, command master chief and housing director

Special considerations:

  • Be sensitive to privacy concerns. There may be Sailors and families who will feel a visit to their home is a violation of their privacy. We must respect this view. The goals and methods of home visitation must be presented in a positive manner to ensure families understand that the visits have been designed exclusively to ensure their health and safety and to promote their quality of life. Visits will only proceed with the informed consent of the Sailor (or adult family member living in the residence, if the Sailor is deployed). All commands will take measures to ensure that we build trust through this process.
  • There cannot be even the hint of retaliation or retribution. It should be the goal of every command that their Sailors bring these and other issues to their command leadership for resolution. Leadership, especially small unit leadership, should be eager to resolve these problems on behalf of their Sailors. These are often sensitive issues, often emotional, and each of us needs to adopt an attitude of seeking to understand and fix problems through frank and helpful conversations.
  • Leaders shall not attempt to be property managers, personal finance counselors or admin specialists. They need to stand side-by-side with the Sailor while engaging with the base CO and base housing office through existing processes if issues are raised.
  • For instances where a Sailor discloses issues with a private landlord not in PPV housing, you can help here too. Often, the best move is to direct the Sailor to meet with the local Region Legal Service Office who have legal assistance attorneys trained and experienced in local landlord-tenant law.

Unit commanders shall prepare implementation guidance required for visit teams from their command. Prior to beginning command visits, the cognizant staff judge advocate and/or offices of general counsel attorney shall be consulted.

No actions taken in support of this NAVADMIN shall replace business agreement manager responsibilities with regard to the ongoing execution of PPV operating agreements. Specifically, visit teams and commands shall not engage with PPV partners directly to ensure discrepancies are corrected. All necessary corrective actions shall be referred to installation commanders for action in accordance with existing approved procedures.

ISICs and TYCOMs shall ensure 100 percent of families of deployed commands are contacted and offered a visit. In all cases, visits shall be conducted no later than April 15.

Visits of residences aboard Army, Air Force and Marine Corps installations shall be recorded and issues referred from unit commanders to the respective host installation and passed as information to the appropriate regional commander area of responsibility.

CNIC and regional commands shall be available if requested to provide advice to installations and tenant commands on Family Housing policy, and associated legal concerns through April 15.

All home visitation records will be submitted to the designated representative of the unit commander, ISIC or TYCOM as appropriate.

Observations taken are not considered records for purposes of the Privacy Act, nor will the observations be made part of a system of records. However, all home visitation records will be handled and secured as if those records were personally identifiable information to protect the privacy of visited families.

All home visitation records will be destroyed no later than one year after the date of the home visit.

Observations recorded will not be used for the completion of evaluations and fitness reports.

CNIC is responsible for providing additional guidance and answering questions from commands in response to this NAVADMIN. Unit commanders shall address questions through host installations to the local regional commander prior to elevating issues and concerns to CNIC.

Unit commanders shall notify their chain of command when all Sailor-families have been contacted and when all visits are complete. Echelon Two commanders shall notify CNIC when 100 percent contact is achieved and when visits are complete. The master database for all PPV issues brought to leadership attention resides at the base housing office level, hence the importance of all issues being provided to the installation command and housing office team for tracking and resolution....it is essential that we strengthen the bonds of trust and confidence with our Sailors and their families.

I realize this is an intrusive “ask” for a lot of folks who are already doing a lot of important work. However, it is essential that we strengthen the bonds of trust and confidence with our Sailors and their families. Let’s get to it.

Editor’s note: This blog was adapted from NAVADMIN 043/19 that was released Feb. 23, 2019.