|WASHINGTON, D.C. (Army News Service) — Beginning the
second day of the Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention
conference, Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, commanding general of Army Materiel
Command noted the Army is fully engaged in preventing sexual harassment
Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody, commanding
general of Army Materiel Command, speaks to the audience in
attendance for the 2010 Sexual Harassment/Assault conference in
Washington, D.C., March 30.
Photo by Jessica Maxwell
“We have critical work left to do though,” Dunwoody said. “We want
our Army to be an example for the rest of the country.”
Later in the morning, Gen. George W. Casey, Jr., chief of staff of the
Army, spoke to the crowd about the progress made since 2007. Recently,
Casey and Secretary of the Army John McHugh spoke to Congress about the
budget needs of the Army for 2011. With the proposed 2011 budget, Casey
said he believes it will be possible to finish regaining balance in the
“We have loose ends to tidy up,” said Casey. “We need to consolidate,
assess and refine ourselves and this great Army we have built.”
Casey said Soldiers and Families are the most important element of the
Army and their support must be sustained.
“Sexual assault eats away at this support,” he said. “We cannot tolerate
Originally focused on after-the-fact care, Casey and Army leadership are
striving to change the culture and environment. Casey said it starts
with small steps and committed Army leadership. Prevention must not only
be pushed from the top down through the ranks, it must also come from
company commanders, first sergeants and up from the platoon level.
“I am not focused on numbers right now,” said Casey. “We need to create
an environment and culture which rejects assault, where someone feels
comfortable in coming forward (to report assault).”
Casey said he believes by placing more visibility on sexual harassment
and assault, the problem will be fixed faster. By using the Army
structure in place, training can be pushed down through the ranks.
“Every leader needs to see sexual assault as fundamentally counter to
the warrior ethos,” said Casey. “It’s all about leadership and leaders
setting the right examples.”
Casey said the Army needs to approach sexual assault from an offensive
mindset, which includes focusing on the enemy and being opportunistic in
Dunwoody added that every unit needs to be a high-performing
“These are people that care about individuals, units that are trained
and ready and they have respect for each other,” said Dunwoody.
Closing his talk, Casey asked the audience to think about three things:
building conviction to fight sexual assault, sustaining momentum for the
fight and changing the culture to stamp out assault and harassment.
“I appreciate the energy in this room,” said Casey. “Now carry that
energy back with you (to your home stations).”