Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month message

MICHAELIS-4.jpgBy Brig. Gen. Patrick R. Michaelis, Commanding General

This month is Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month with the theme “Prevention Starts With You.” The theme puts into words what it means to be a good teammate and recognizes that each of us has responsibility for the welfare of our squad.

It is our duty to build and sustain trusting relationships that promote a culture where Soldiers and Civilians can expect their leaders and teammates to listen and take action when needed. Trust is foundational to the success of any team. Squads need to be able to trust that their teammates and leaders are looking out for them. Do the people on your team know each other, does your team trust you, and do you trust your team? If you cannot answer ‘yes’ to all three, there is room for growth.

Sexual assault prevention is aligned with Fort Jackson’s People First line of effort, specifically protecting our workforce from harmful behaviors. ‘This Is My Squad’ is intended to bring the welfare, character development, and personal lives of squad mates to the forefront of our professional environment. We want strong squads full of people that look out for each other, help each other, and actually know each other.

When a squad is disciplined, works well together, and maintains standards, it is easier to recognize deviations in behavior and to proactively address problems early. Prevention starts by creating strong, professional bonds and to hold each other to a standard.

You can contribute to preventing sexual assault and harassment. Start by building a cohesive team that maintains high standards. Squads that care about its people will reject harmful behaviors. Be the influence that creates a great team. Correct deficiencies, earn the trust of your people, and take care of them.