Home' Army News : March 15th 2012 Contents Army March 15, 2012
Culture in spotlight
Cpl Max Bree
CHANGE is on the way after
the release of a series of reviews
delving into Defence culture in
Canberra on March 7.
Defence Minister Stephen
Smith, CDF Gen David Hurley and
Defence Secretary Duncan Lewis
released six reviews covering the
personal conduct of ADF person-
nel, use of alcohol in the ADF,
use of social media in Defence,
Defence public service women's
leadership pathways, management
of incidents and complaints, and
allegations of sexual and other
abuse in Defence.
A report into the ADFA "Skype
incident" which prompted the cul-
ture reviews will not be made pub-
lic because of privacy concerns and
an ongoing police investigation.
"The ADF has had a mirror in
the form of six reviews held up to it
over the past 11 months. As any of
us normally do when we look into a
mirror, we see strengths and we see
flaws," Gen Hurley said.
In response to the culture
reviews, Defence has produced a
Reviews prompt strategy to evolve Defence culture and examine complaint handling processes
Personal conduct of ADF personnel -- Found
members were aware of the expectations on them
and a relatively small number failed to live up to
those standards. Its recommendations included sim-
plifying policy and the complaints process.
Use of alcohol in the ADF -- Recommendations
included a review of alcohol prices at ADF bases and
preparation of an evidence-based alcohol manage-
ment strategy for Defence.
Use of social media in Defence -- Recommended a
review of all ADF policies in relation to social media
and a review of social media training within Defence.
Defence APS women's leadership pathways -- As
a result of the report Defence will begin a rotation
program for senior women at Senior Executive
Service Band 2/3 with the broader APS and establish
a central maternity leave pool to manage the full-time
equivalent liability associated with maternity leave.
Management of incidents and complaints --
Recommended Defence reduce the current backlog
of grievances, simplify training and information on
complaint and develop an improved process to man-
The report of the review into allegations of sexual
and other abuse in Defence, was redacted for pri-
strategy, The Pathway to Change:
Evolving Defence Culture. The
strategy outlines steps toward cul-
ture change, including re-exam-
ining the organisation's values,
reviewing the handling of miscon-
duct and diversifying the senior
"The type of deep and far-
reaching reform we are seek-
ing will take time and a sustained
effort from all Defence staff over
many years," Gen Hurley said.
"But make no mistake -- we are
committed to tackling our cultural
challenges at their source."
He said recommendations
from the review into the treatment
of women at ADFA were already
being implemented, including
a new residential support officer
scheme, which puts junior offic-
ers in their final years at ADFA in
place to provide live-in supervision
and peer support for cadets.
"As Defence members we
understand that we are quite rightly
held to higher standards and great-
er scrutiny than the majority of the
Australian society," Gen Hurley
"And while we strive for a clean
record, if things do go wrong, we
must be able to demonstrate that
we have the moral courage to act
and the ability to respond in an
appropriate and timely manner."
Mr Smith said the reviews were
a "frank and sober assessment of
"But it's also a very construc-
tive and positive way forward," he
said.The reviews made 109 recom-
mendations. Of these, 85 have been
fully accepted by Defence. The
remaining 24 have been accepted
The reviews were initiated last
year after an incident in which a
male ADFA officer cadet streamed
internet video of consensual sex
with a female cadet to cadets in
another room without the woman's
ADFA Commandant CDRE
Bruce Kafer has resumed his duties
after the Kirkham Inquiry into the
incident found no wrongdoing with
his handling of the matter.
The reports can be viewed online at www.
at the release
of the Defence
Cook helps family
in house fire
Cpl Nick Wiseman
CHEF Cpl Daryl Freeman selflessly risked his life to help res-
cue three children and their mother from an arson attack on
their home in Palmerston, NT, on March 6.
Woken at about 4.40am by three children screaming over
the fence at his bedroom window, Cpl Freeman jumped from
his bed to find their car burning out of control.
Cpl Freeman, of 1CSSB, said at first he thought it was a
"I could hear the children screaming 'help our mum' from
outside our window," he said.
After lifting the children into the safety of his yard, Cpl
Freeman then ran next door where he saw the neighbour's car
engulfed in fire.
Cpl Freeman said the children's mother was attempting to
fight the fire when he came around.
"I ran to her and dragged her to safety telling her to go to
her children," he said.
"After making sure she was safe I started to fight the fire."
Having spent four years fighting bushfires in Victoria, Cpl
Freeman found some of his old skills rushing back.
"Small things like knowing how to better manage with
smoke around helped out a lot," he said.
With the car exploding from the fuel in its tank, the
house was in danger of catching fire but Cpl Freeman
soon had it under control and out by the time the local
fire brigade arrived.
By the time the police had finished taking his state-
ment he was running late for his morning shift as the
shift supervisor at the Robertson Barracks ORs mess.
Arriving shortly after his normal start time he went to
the RAP where he was found to have suffered from minor
smoke inhalation and sent home.
With the remains of the car and scorch marks still vis-
ible, Cpl Freeman offered to help clean the area to reduce
further trauma when his neighbours' children returned
About six hours later and with help from a friend, the
area was cleaned up as much as possible.
With the ordeal now over Cpl Freeman said he was
angry that someone had planned and carried out the
"The possibility of what could have happened is just
horrendous," he said. "She's lucky she had the fore-
thought to evacuate her children to the safety of the back-
yard and then the children waking me up."
Cpl Freeman said he didn't have time to really think about
what he was doing -- he just did it.
"If you see something wrong you can't be afraid to get in
there and help," he said.
CA LT-Gen David Morrison said he was "disgusted"
by comments posted by some members of the "RAR
Buddies" Facebook site.
Speaking on the ABC's 7.30 Report, Lt-Gen
Morrison said what had started as a meeting place for
soldiers had "gotten out of control".
"There are a group of people within [the site] that
have posted this material, which I just find repug-
nant," he said.
"If we identify any serving member having made
inappropriate comments, I will take administrative or
disciplinary action when I can."
The Chief sent an email to all members of the
site, regardless of whether they were current or ex-
serving members, with the following message:
IT HAS been brought to Army's attention that the
Facebook site "RAR Buddies" has been used as a
forum to transmit offensive comments relating to
gender, religion, nationality and/or sexual orientation.
Despite the fact that this is a "closed" Facebook
page, a large amount of information from the site has
been provided to Army identifying individual names
and comments on a range of issues, the majority of
which are highly offensive and contrary to Army val-
ues and those of the wider community.
The link between the name of this site and the
Australian Army has seriously damaged the Army's
reputation within the Australian community and is
contrary to the values that the Army stands for.
I have directed action to identify if serving mem-
bers of the regular or reserve Army have participated
in this site and, where inappropriate comments have
been made, I intend to take action against those
Australian Defence members should read DI
(G) Admin 08-1 before making public comments or
posting material on social networking sites such as
Facebook. Be aware that Australian Army members
are responsible and accountable for their actions
whether in or out of uniform, which includes posting
comments on social networking sites.
If you were previously a member of the Australian
Army, your comments only serve to undermine the
tremendous work that those still in uniform are doing
in the service of our country. If you were proud of
your service, which most ex-serving members have
good reason to be, please consider the impact that
your comments have on those still in uniform.
Lt-Gen David Morrison
Chief of Army
values -- CA
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