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sandsjames
10-12-2016, 01:25 PM
We've got an issue with a black female student and her hair standards...the main problem being that all the white male NCOs who are supposed to have balls are afraid to correct her because "it will end up at MEO".

The AFI is so unclear on female hair as it is...this is what we have. She's wearing a hair band which leaves bulk coming out the back. It fits all the measurement requirements but does not present, IMO, a professional appearance because it's just frizz pointing up to the sky (again, within the 3 inch requirement). The AFI talks about standards for a bun, but not for loose hair.

I know the answer is usually "if it looks unprofessional it probably is" but my leadership doesn't seem to want to take that chance.

Does anybody know what the specifics are for hair in a hair tie, other than 3 inches of bulk and no wider than the head while allowing the wear of a hat?

Bos Mutus
10-12-2016, 02:45 PM
We've got an issue with a black female student and her hair standards...the main problem being that all the white male NCOs who are supposed to have balls are afraid to correct her because "it will end up at MEO".

The AFI is so unclear on female hair as it is...this is what we have. She's wearing a hair band which leaves bulk coming out the back. It fits all the measurement requirements but does not present, IMO, a professional appearance because it's just frizz pointing up to the sky (again, within the 3 inch requirement). The AFI talks about standards for a bun, but not for loose hair.

I know the answer is usually "if it looks unprofessional it probably is" but my leadership doesn't seem to want to take that chance.

Does anybody know what the specifics are for hair in a hair tie, other than 3 inches of bulk and no wider than the head while allowing the wear of a hat?

I'm a little dated on this stuff, but...

IIRC, the reg is not going to give you exact specifics for every situation. In stuff like this it comes down to a judgment call.

The ultimate judgment falls on the shoulders of the commander. Sounds like maybe the NCOs are not sure whether or not the commander will agree with their assessment, or whether the commander will have their back. Even if the commander disagrees and says her hair is fine...the NCOs should not feel diminished by that. Judgment's differ, but they should make the first one anyway...if the individual wants to appeal the decision, there is an avenue to do that and the NCO should not feel threatened by it. I will also say that even if the troop "wins with the commander"...the NCO should not take it personal and be cool and go with it. Okay, you made a call and someone disagreed...big deal, happens every day.

I had a situation similar to this many years ago...basically, I made my call and told the young lady that IMO her hair was not meeting the standard of professionalism...but also informed her that there was some subjectivity to it. As her supervisor it was my job to apply my best judgment. There is a chance that other well-meaning folks would disagree...and if she wanted to press to test, she is more than welcome to take it to the first sergeant, no hurt feelings on my part. If not, she needs to correct the issue.

sandsjames
10-12-2016, 02:52 PM
I'm a little dated on this stuff, but...

IIRC, the reg is not going to give you exact specifics for every situation. In stuff like this it comes down to a judgment call.

The ultimate judgment falls on the shoulders of the commander. Sounds like maybe the NCOs are not sure whether or not the commander will agree with their assessment, or whether the commander will have their back. Even if the commander disagrees and says her hair is fine...the NCOs should not feel diminished by that. Judgment's differ, but they should make the first one anyway...if the individual wants to appeal the decision, there is an avenue to do that and the NCO should not feel threatened by it. I will also say that even if the troop "wins with the commander"...the NCO should not take it personal and be cool and go with it. Okay, you made a call and someone disagreed...big deal, happens every day.

I had a situation similar to this many years ago...basically, I made my call and told the young lady that IMO her hair was not meeting the standard of professionalism...but also informed her that there was some subjectivity to it. As her supervisor it was my job to apply my best judgment. There is a chance that other well-meaning folks would disagree...and if she wanted to press to test, she is more than welcome to take it to the first sergeant, no hurt feelings on my part. If not, she needs to correct the issue.

Thanks...that's a great way to do it. I'll give it a shot.

Rainmaker
10-12-2016, 02:59 PM
but my leadership doesn't seem to want to take that chance.

Folks. Here's another first hand example of the destructive nature of "political correctness". & How It prevents you from making a value judgment.

sandsjames "leadership" (and Rainmaker use the term loosely) refuses to enforce Air Force standards because of fear of reprisal and getting bogged down with defending against the phony "racism" bullshit. & Hence a major reason why our country (and its Military) is in the Shitter.

garhkal
10-12-2016, 06:49 PM
I've seen this sort of issue too, and 9 out of 10 times it was with black women.. Whether cause of corn-rolls or some other hair styling, but the regs never seemed to address it and the EO culture seemed to be 'whites don't correct blacks'..

sandsjames
10-12-2016, 06:53 PM
I've seen this sort of issue too, and 9 out of 10 times it was with black women.. Whether cause of corn-rolls or some other hair styling, but the regs never seemed to address it and the EO culture seemed to be 'whites don't correct blacks'..

Corn rows, dude. Corn rows.

Rainmaker
10-12-2016, 08:21 PM
corn rows, dude. Corn rows.

CoRN ROWS ARE OUR GREATEST STRENGFFF!!!

Mjölnir
10-12-2016, 08:54 PM
I'm a little dated on this stuff, but...

IIRC, the reg is not going to give you exact specifics for every situation. In stuff like this it comes down to a judgment call.

The ultimate judgment falls on the shoulders of the commander. Sounds like maybe the NCOs are not sure whether or not the commander will agree with their assessment, or whether the commander will have their back. Even if the commander disagrees and says her hair is fine...the NCOs should not feel diminished by that. Judgment's differ, but they should make the first one anyway...if the individual wants to appeal the decision, there is an avenue to do that and the NCO should not feel threatened by it. I will also say that even if the troop "wins with the commander"...the NCO should not take it personal and be cool and go with it. Okay, you made a call and someone disagreed...big deal, happens every day.

I had a situation similar to this many years ago...basically, I made my call and told the young lady that IMO her hair was not meeting the standard of professionalism...but also informed her that there was some subjectivity to it. As her supervisor it was my job to apply my best judgment. There is a chance that other well-meaning folks would disagree...and if she wanted to press to test, she is more than welcome to take it to the first sergeant, no hurt feelings on my part. If not, she needs to correct the issue.



Very good tactic. I would also consider looping in the 1stSgt or SEL and if there is really concern over it becoming an EO issue also loop in the EO Officer/NCO

Bos Mutus
10-12-2016, 10:19 PM
Very good tactic. I would also consider looping in the 1stSgt or SEL and if there is really concern over it becoming an EO issue also loop in the EO Officer/NCO

I'm not gonna pre-clear all my decisions...maybe if it's something major, but this doesn't sound like it is, to me.

I'll make the call and live with it either way...I think some people get too butt-hurt over being overturned at a higher level.

It's not personal..just a difference of opinion and I'm completely fine with that. There is no way every one above me in the chain of command will make the same subjective decision the same way.

Now, I would have to say that I already had a good working relationship with my troop and it was no big deal.

sandsjames
10-12-2016, 10:24 PM
I'm not gonna pre-clear all my decisions...maybe if it's something major, but this doesn't sound like it is, to me.

I'll make the call and live with it either way...I think some people get too butt-hurt over being overturned at a higher level.

It's not personal..just a difference of opinion and I'm completely fine with that. There is no way every one above me in the chain of command will make the same subjective decision the same way.

Now, I would have to say that I already had a good working relationship with my troop and it was no big deal.

It's a little different as a tech school instructor because the students aren't our "troops" and we handle more of the academic discipline while the rest of the discipline goes up the chain.

Bos Mutus
10-12-2016, 10:28 PM
It's a little different as a tech school instructor because the students aren't our "troops" and we handle more of the academic discipline while the rest of the discipline goes up the chain.

Fair enough.

Is there a difference in that role between military and civilian instructors?

garhkal
10-13-2016, 06:04 AM
Corn rows, dude. Corn rows.

I've always heard them called corn rolls...

Mjölnir
10-13-2016, 09:11 AM
I'm not gonna pre-clear all my decisions...maybe if it's something major, but this doesn't sound like it is, to me.

I'll make the call and live with it either way...I think some people get too butt-hurt over being overturned at a higher level.

It's not personal..just a difference of opinion and I'm completely fine with that. There is no way every one above me in the chain of command will make the same subjective decision the same way.

Now, I would have to say that I already had a good working relationship with my troop and it was no big deal.

I normally would do the same thing. IMO with a potential EO issue, best to have someone looped in.

Mjölnir
10-13-2016, 09:16 AM
I've seen this sort of issue too, and 9 out of 10 times it was with black women.. Whether cause of corn-rolls or some other hair styling, but the regs never seemed to address it and the EO culture seemed to be 'whites don't correct blacks'..

Uniform regulation update in 2014 specifically addressed it, they are authorized.

White personnel can definitely correct black personnel, just have to be sure that whoever is doing the correcting understands the regulation &/or local policy. A subordinate command or individual can't change the specific guidance of a senior ... Without approval.

sandsjames
10-13-2016, 10:45 AM
Fair enough.

Is there a difference in that role between military and civilian instructors?

No, not really. Instructors, military or civilian, are pretty powerless for anything other than academic issues. We can really only send the students to the NCOIC (principal's) office and suggest that they do paperwork. Then, if our NCOIC decides to do paperwork, he has to send it to the MTLs (Military Training Leaders-NCOs at the dorms who are supposed to be the disciplinary part) and hope that they give a shit that we did paperwork. Most of the time they will just scrap the paperwork, sometimes right in front of the students.

It's been that way as long as I can remember and nobody has ever done anything about it. For us, as instructors, we can do all the paperwork and discipline we want but if the students pass the tests then we won't get support to do anything but graduate them.

sandsjames
10-13-2016, 10:48 AM
I've always heard them called corn rolls...

Well, you heard wrong. If you look at the way a corn field is laid out in rows, then look at the hairstyle, it makes sense. Unless the people you are seeing have hairdos that look like corn muffins or something.

sandsjames
10-13-2016, 10:49 AM
Oh, and Mod...you're welcome for someone starting a thread actually related to a military issue!!!

Rainmaker
10-13-2016, 12:17 PM
White personnel can definitely correct black personnel, just have to be sure that whoever is doing the correcting understands the regulation &/or local policy. A subordinate command or individual can't change the specific guidance of a senior ... Without approval.

You mean NCOs are allowed to handle NCO business as long as they've cleared it with a Field Grade officer first? Gee how efficient!

Now I can see why 1/2 of the black kids at MacDill are running around in uniform with 2 weeks of stubble on their face!

Mjölnir
10-13-2016, 12:17 PM
Oh, and Mod...you're welcome for someone starting a thread actually related to a military issue!!!

Thanks ... please do more often.

Mjölnir
10-13-2016, 12:19 PM
You mean NCOs are allowed to handle NCO business as long as they've cleared it with a Field Grade officer first? Gee how efficient!

Not sure when the 1stSgt or equal opportunity officer became a field grade officer.

Rainmaker
10-13-2016, 04:12 PM
Not sure when the 1stSgt or equal opportunity officer became a field grade officer.

Truth be told Commander, Rainmaker can't speak for the Navy Seapersons.

However, In Debbie James' New AF, It's always the safe play for a young NCO to first contact AT LEAST a Colonel 0-6 (or better yet a Civilian Presidential appointee), before risking an EEO complaint (by telling a 'person of color' (®) , to get a hair cut and potentially hurting their feelings.

See? It's mission critical now that E-4s and above become intimately familiar with Section 1111 of Public Law 106-398 and The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 (or subsequently enacted similar legislation) before making these types of potentially controversial decisions.

If 'Folks' (®) still have questions (after memorizing the entirety of the United states code) then they should contact their friendly Air Force Deputy Assistant Secretary for Strategic Diversity Integration for further guidence. FORWARD!!

sparks82
10-13-2016, 04:30 PM
I'm in a joint unit - mostly Air Force. We just had Air Force EO (I think they took the "M" out of it and just call themselves EO like the Army does). This is what one of the EO people said. Next time you have someone "threaten" to go to EO, just tell them "Let me take you up there." She said people who are abusing the EO system generally drop it pretty quick when their NCO says they're going to take them.

They told us as long as you follow regulation you don't have a problem. People can make a complaint all they want - but they said here that the majority of times people come to them it isn't even a legitimate EO violation. It's people getting offended. They said they usually get it resolved in the command and they haven't filed too many formal complaints here on the base. She said most of it here is inappropriate workplace actions and comments. Not someone actually discriminating.

I would love for a soldier I correct to report me to EO. Please do so. They will end up looking like the biggest idiot in the world once I have the regulation with me and show them in front of everyone how they were wrong. I don't care what color or gender or anything they are. If you're fucked up, you're fucked up!!

I agree with the statement that I think in all regulations it only goes so far and then it's up to the commander or the NCO to use their best judgment on interpreting that regulation. If her hair is unprofessional and she has ignored your repeated order to fix it, take it up the chain. But make sure there's paperwork. I don't know how AF JAG is but when I was at Riley, if you didn't have the paperwork to back up any UCMJ, they threw that shit right back at the unit. If someone didn't follow up on the counseling and actually do the bottom part of the DA 4856 like we're supposed to - they kicked the packet back and wouldn't move it forward because they didn't afford the soldier the chance to correct the behavior.

Mjölnir
10-13-2016, 05:41 PM
Truth be told Commander, Rainmaker can't speak for the Navy Seapersons.

However, In Debbie James' New AF, It's always the safe play for a young NCO to first contact AT LEAST a Colonel 0-6 (or better yet a Civilian Presidential appointee), before risking an EEO complaint (by telling a 'person of color' (®) , to get a hair cut and potentially hurting their feelings.

See? It's mission critical now that E-4s and above become intimately familiar with Section 1111 of Public Law 106-398 and The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 (or subsequently enacted similar legislation) before making these types of potentially controversial decisions.

If 'Folks' (®) still have questions (after memorizing the entirety of the United states code) then they should contact their friendly Air Force Deputy Assistant Secretary for Strategic Diversity Integration for further guidence. FORWARD!!

Definitely not that way in the Navy. I just detached from a joint (Air Force ran) command, that wasn't the way there. If the perception by NCO's is that they can't handle things themselves ... it is probably a problem with either their command (CO) or the NCO's themselves and not the policy.

VCO
11-16-2016, 03:25 AM
I'm not gonna pre-clear all my decisions...maybe if it's something major, but this doesn't sound like it is, to me.

I'll make the call and live with it either way...I think some people get too butt-hurt over being overturned at a higher level.

It's not personal..just a difference of opinion and I'm completely fine with that. There is no way every one above me in the chain of command will make the same subjective decision the same way.

Now, I would have to say that I already had a good working relationship with my troop and it was no big deal.
You don't have to pre-clear your decision, however, you could gain some top cover. Talk to the Shirt and give him/her a heads-up.

VCO
11-16-2016, 03:28 AM
Definitely not that way in the Navy. I just detached from a joint (Air Force ran) command, that wasn't the way there. If the perception by NCO's is that they can't handle things themselves ... it is probably a problem with either their command (CO) or the NCO's themselves and not the policy.
It isn't that way in the Air Force either. The BEST way to handle this is to address it. Just make sure you are right. Give the Shirt a head's up so he/she can handle any EO fall out (not likely).

LogDog
11-16-2016, 05:34 PM
I'm in a joint unit - mostly Air Force. We just had Air Force EO (I think they took the "M" out of it and just call themselves EO like the Army does). This is what one of the EO people said. Next time you have someone "threaten" to go to EO, just tell them "Let me take you up there." She said people who are abusing the EO system generally drop it pretty quick when their NCO says they're going to take them.

They told us as long as you follow regulation you don't have a problem. People can make a complaint all they want - but they said here that the majority of times people come to them it isn't even a legitimate EO violation. It's people getting offended. They said they usually get it resolved in the command and they haven't filed too many formal complaints here on the base. She said most of it here is inappropriate workplace actions and comments. Not someone actually discriminating.

I would love for a soldier I correct to report me to EO. Please do so. They will end up looking like the biggest idiot in the world once I have the regulation with me and show them in front of everyone how they were wrong. I don't care what color or gender or anything they are. If you're fucked up, you're fucked up!!

I agree with the statement that I think in all regulations it only goes so far and then it's up to the commander or the NCO to use their best judgment on interpreting that regulation. If her hair is unprofessional and she has ignored your repeated order to fix it, take it up the chain. But make sure there's paperwork. I don't know how AF JAG is but when I was at Riley, if you didn't have the paperwork to back up any UCMJ, they threw that shit right back at the unit. If someone didn't follow up on the counseling and actually do the bottom part of the DA 4856 like we're supposed to - they kicked the packet back and wouldn't move it forward because they didn't afford the soldier the chance to correct the behavior.
I agree with you if a person threatens to take you to the EO to call their bluff. If you know the regs and are confident in your decision chances are they'll back down. I've had airmen and NCOs threaten to complain to the EO and I tell them "Go ahead but you better make sure you're right or you're going to look foolish and the next time you take a complaint to them they'll be skeptical of you." I've only had a couple of complaints lodged against me but they were all dismissed in my favor. The reasons they were dismissed were simple; they didn't know or agree with what the regs/rules or what the union contract (civilians) were when they made their complaint.

LogDog
11-16-2016, 05:43 PM
It isn't that way in the Air Force either. The BEST way to handle this is to address it. Just make sure you are right. Give the Shirt a head's up so he/she can handle any EO fall out (not likely).
Keep the problem at the lowest level. Use the First Sergeant for help to keep it from getting to the EO level.

Bos Mutus
11-17-2016, 03:29 PM
Just make sure you are right.

I don't like this part. Sometimes you just have to do the best you can. If you tell people to "be sure you are right" it tends to make them not want to act.

As long as someone is coming to an honest judgment, I think they have little to fear.


Give the Shirt a head's up so he/she can handle any EO fall out (not likely).

I still don't think this is an issue that requires top cover. I think the fear of EO is largely unfounded and correcting a student's hair should be a relatively minor issue. Just let her know what her appeal avenue is, if she wants...and if the commander says she is fine, then so be it. Don't lose any sleep over it.