8th STB holds standown for SHARP awareness

| June 28, 2013 | 0 Comments
Soldiers with the 8th STB, 8th TSC, put on a skit to show the importance of the Army’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program. (Photo by Spc. David Innes, 8th Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs)

Soldiers with the 8th STB, 8th TSC, put on a skit to show the importance of the Army’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program. (Photo by Spc. David Innes, 8th Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs)

Staff Sgt. Gaelen Lowers
8th Theater Sustainment Command
Public Affairs

More than 550 8th Special Troops Battalion Soldiers, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, committed four hours, June 20, for a standdown to review the Army’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) program.

The standdown took place to promote the unit’s — and Army’s — dedication to having a climate of dignity and respect.

The stoppage of work demonstrated the commitment of 8th STB to change because of the large scale and critical nature of its mission. Participants ranged in rank from private to major general.

Maj. Gen. Stephen Lyons, commanding, 8th TSC, touted his pride of the unit and its day’s worth of introspection. He said it was important to hold everyone accountable across all ranks.

“We are the greatest Army in the world,” said Lyons. “People have a sacred trust in us. We have a responsibility to take a look at ourselves and make the Army better.”

The 8th STB divided the participants into two groups of about 275 each that rotated between two interactive stations, ensuring that every Soldier in the unit received all of the information.

At one station, Soldiers watched a documentary about sexual assault in the military. The introspective film provoked thoughts and discussion within the groups.

“This film is a microcosm of the Army and the military in general, but in no way downplays the seriousness of this issue,” said Lt. Col. Matthew Goodman, commander, 8th STB. “We have a responsibility to our brothers and sisters in arms to take care of each other.”

The second station featured several SHARP representatives and volunteers acting out skits that outlined the dangers associated with alcohol.

The three-part skit showed a Soldier, brand new to the Army and her unit, seduced by other Soldiers into drinking. The purpose of the skit was to show the audience how an act, regardless of how innocent, can turn into something terrible like sexual assault.

“I’m glad the unit took the time to talk about these very serious issues,” said Spc. Jacquelyn Robbins, an 8th STB Soldier in the surgeon cell section. “It shows me, and I think everyone here, that sexual assault and harassment will not be tolerated here, or the Army.”

This event is one of many the unit has conducted in the past two months to show the 8th STB’s commitment to SHARP and to increase awareness and combat sexual assault and harassment, while vigilantly doing whatever’s necessary to ensure a culture of dignity and respect for all.

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Category: News, Training

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