- Posted October 13, 2012 by
Procedural Compliance for Who or What?
The military has instruction for almost everything. You see, this allows them to hold people to standards. These same procedures and instructions are hammered in your head over and over until you understand or at least know where to find them. Engineering Dept goes overboard in some cases as the training is non stop. You had better have the procedure open if you plan on visiting the head (toilet). They rely on procedures to ensure safety of equipment and crew. In most instances it is known that if you violate the written word you will be punished. Well maybe, or sometimes, well it really depends on just who you are. For instance, we have a Capt. who told the crew that the correct actions for a TS safe being found open unguarded were taken. Contrary to procedure. Or a Chief forges some records in a bearing log gets caught and it gets overlooked at the critique. I do not claim to be perfect. I was far from it. Many times the only thing that kept me from the green table receiving punishment was knowing what to say and when. The whole command is a pressure cooker environment. Loads of pressure causing stress had people walking on eggshells. You never really knew when your time might come and you would be on the receiving end of punishment. Many say thats why we have standards and procedures. Well many would be wrong. You see these standards and procedures do not apply to E-7 or above. I take that back they do apply but there is very little reprocussion if they violate. You could be fired or forced to leave the ship but it is more of a reward of sorts. See these guys will report to a shore command as corrective actions are being decided on. Unless it is a serious charge, they will still be able to retire with pay and benefits for the remainder of their life. The previous 19 I wrote about earlier or most of those guys/girls will receive honorable discharges and receive taxpayer dollars for the rest of their life. People say why or what are you getting at? Recently a good friend committed suicide on board the USS Maryland B. This isn't the first in the last bit either. A MMC (A-DIV)did the same 3 yrs ago. Both these guys were well respected leaders that took the job to heart. The Navy tried to wash their hands quickly shifting blame outside the command. Both times they must not have read the instruction regarding suicide prevention. Oh wait they are required to train on it every year. So OPNAV Inst 1720.4A had been trained on at least 14 times by Nicks MMC(Nuke) and at least 18 times by the Marylands previous CO (Newton). This lays out the guidelines to be taken when people talk or attempt suicide. You see in Jan 2012 Nick racked some rounds in a gun during a tough time and his roommate called his immediate supervisor who talked him out of it. A bit later there was another attempt. People should ask the questions who knew about this and what actions did they take. I've been told it was covered up as the boat had to get underway. Now these are serious issues. OPNAV Inst 1720.4A States that these specific actions must be routed up the chain immediately. Not sure but that didn't happen. (2) COs shall foster a command climate that supports and
promotes psychological health consistent with operational stress
control principles. For example:
(a) Foster unit morale and cohesion;
(b) Promote physical fitness;
(c) Provide clear direction and sense of mission;
(d) Deglamorize alcohol use;
(e) Know your Service members;
(f) Ensure adequate time for rest;
(g) Encourage good communication;
(h) Help Service members maintain a work-life
(i) Do positive after-action reviews;
(j ) Reward accomplishments;
(k)Refer early for intervention;
(1) Comrnunicate/coordinate with mental health
(m) Reintegrate Service member back into the unit
You see someone dropped the ball on ACEFGHIJKLM. I mean ignorance is no excuse of the law and all that right?
(3) COs shall provide support for those who seek help
with personal problems. Access must be provided to prevention,
counseling and treatment programs and services supporting the
early resolution of mental health, and family and personal
problems that underlie suicidal behavior.
(4) If a Service member's comments, written communication
or behaviors lead the command to believe there is imminent risk
that the person may cause harm to self or others, command
leadership must take safety measures that include restricting
4 Aug 09
access of at-risk personnel to means that can be used to inflict
harm and seek emergent mental health evaluation consistent with
reference (b) .
There are tons of resources that are very specific about the how to deal with depression or suicide attempts. For instance Supervisors are to immediately inform the chain of command and get the service member help. Remove them from the environment. The first two attempts were known about. Please don''t deny this as phone records will show this. If the immediate supervisor or CO would have followed the written rule here there is a good possibility the service member would still be here. The MMC had asked for help as well. Both men were exceptional people. Both had great hearts and the people around them respected their ability. Both asked for help. The system banged into the head of every crew member was ignored to some degree. The command pointed to everyone else. Family were left to suffer. No matter what was said family will have to live with the question of was it my fault is their something I could have done? When really the job (the Navy) they worked so hard at failed them at first chance. Supervisors violated their own procedure then lied about it. Families I knew both of these guys and I will be the first to tell you they were good people who loved you all very much. You already knew that though. The job they put so much into failed them at first availability.