FROM THE FULLTIME JAG’S DESK - MAJ William E. O’Connor                                          Volume I, Issue 2         ...
Your Rights Under USERRA - SGT Javier Fontánez, Legal NCO                             The Uniformed Services Employ-      ...
of the position to which the per-son is otherwise entitled, interms of status and pay, with fullseniority.A disability nee...
Talking About Identity Theft: Deter, Detect and Defend                                                                    ...
cific information on what to do        ■Never click on links sent in        make.can be found in the Federal            un...
tion cancelled. The Army has         tary Departments and their du-                                          On Dec. 22, 2...
7. DUTY ASSIGNMENTS:                 8. MEDICAL POLICY:                  10. COLLECTION ANDThere are no changes to duty   ...
and Kaffee is discover-PUERTO RICO NATIONAL GUARDOFFICE OF THE STAFF JUDGE ADVOCATE                                       ...
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The Advocate Issue 2 Vol 1


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The Advocate is back with another issue! This second issue of the PRNG JAG\'s publication is filled with all sorts of great information:
1) How to prevent identity theft
2) The latest info regarding the repeal of "Don\'t Ask, Don\'t Tell"
3) Beneficial Social Media guidance
4) Last but not least, read the JAG office\'s movie review of the timeless military courtroom drama "A Few Good Men".

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The Advocate Issue 2 Vol 1

  1. 1. FROM THE FULLTIME JAG’S DESK - MAJ William E. O’Connor Volume I, Issue 2 October 2011 may arise during deploy- cludes the latest on the Welcome to another ments or periods of active DADT Repeal, already in edition of The Advocate. duty. effect. For those of you joining us for the first time, let’s bring We’re engaging in preven- In future editions we’ll you up to speed on what tive law as a measure to discuss the PR Veterans we’re all about. enhance readiness and Bill of Rights and other provide you the tools state legislation that pro- Our experience in the OSJA needed to consider those vide additional benefits or has taught us that many issues relevant to military protections to our Guards- service members and de- service and everyday life. men. We’ll also present a “We’re engaging pendents have questions By being proactive we section dealing with Stan- in preventive law or concerns regarding serve you better as Judge dards of Conduct (Ethics) benefits or protections af- as a measure to Advocates and fellow ser- and other topics of inter- forded by both Federal and vice members. est.enhance readiness State Law, as members of and provide you the National Guard. In this month’s issue we Finally, the PRNG OSJA discuss the USERRA and has launched its Face-the tools needed to With The Advocate you take a look at the problem book page. There you will consider those have basic information of ID Theft. Almost every find other links to both readily available without issues relevant to waiting days or weeks to week we receive visits legal and military re- military service from our soldiers seeking sources. This is just an- contact us to clarify issues guidance on these and other way in which weand everyday life.” or get references. Each other subjects. stay Ready, Relevant and month we’ll address the Accessible. We hope that issues that you’ve brought We continue to address you enjoy this issue of to our attention. This way social media as well as The Advocate. you’ll have a ready guide content for our paralegal for those legal matters that professionals which in- FROM THE CHIEF LEGAL NCO’S DESK - SFC Frank Chiroque ble for said protections. treatment of openly gay Inside this issue: Among the chal- service members. No You Rights 2 lenges we encounter on a Also in this issue, we tackle another growing longer will a person’s sex- Under USERRA daily basis in the OSJA even problem in our National ual orientation be the sole today, after ten years pro- Link It Up! 3 Guard, identity theft. reason for discharge, al- viding legal support to our We’ve provided you with lowing for an individual to Talking About Identity 4 soldiers and airmen en- Theft: Deter, Detect & valuable information to be evaluated on their mer- gaged in the War against Defend help you Deter, Detect and its. Terror, is the ignorance of many employers regarding Defend from identity theft. Finally, we continue to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: 6 offer guidance on the Repealed USERRA. Unfortunately, many of our proper use of social me- “Unfortunately, The USERRA was designed Guardsmen are victims of dia, giving special atten- Social Media For 7 many of our to minimize disadvantages this growing trend and Soldiers and Army tion to maintaining OPSEC Personnel that can affect individuals have become part of the Guardsmen are increasing number of peo- levels, protecting our- when absent from civilian selves, our families and victims of this employment in order to ple whose identity has At the Movies: 8 buddies from the ever A Few Good Mengrowing trend and serve in the US Armed been stolen. present threats created by Forces. It is our obligation From the JAG Bookshelf: 8have become part Another topic of interest our enemies on the Web. The Law of Armed to continue to watch over we discuss in this issue is of the the rights of our Guards- Don’t miss the Link It Up! Conflict the recent repeal of Don’t increasing men and in this edition we Ask, Don’t Tell, as official section, where you can go What’s New on Our 8number of people take the time to go over the beyond the articles in this Facebook Page. policy of the US Armed basic elements and protec- newsletter and get morewhose identity has Forces. A new stage in information and resources tions provided by USERRA our military’s progress been stolen.” as well as requirements straight from the source. starts with very important needed in order to be eligi- changes regarding the
  2. 2. Your Rights Under USERRA - SGT Javier Fontánez, Legal NCO The Uniformed Services Employ- application for reemployment. An employer is required to pro- ment and Reemployment Rights Reemployment may not be de- vide four basic entitlements to a Act of 1994 (USERRA, 38 U.S.C. layed, however, if such docu- returning service member, upon § 4301 – 4335) is federal law mentation does not exist or is reemployment: (1) Prompt rein- enacted to ensure that persons not readily available. In general, statement (generally a matter of who serve or have served in the the following documents have days, not weeks, but will depend Armed Forces, Reserves, Na- been determined by the Secre- on the length of absence); (2) tional Guard or other ―uniformed tary of Labor to satisfy proof of Accrued seniority, as if continu- services:‖ (1) are not disadvan- eligibility for reemployment: ously employed. This applies to taged in their civilian careers discharge papers, leave and rights and benefits determined because of their service; (2) are earnings statements, school by seniority as well. This includes promptly reemployed in their completion certificate, en- status, rate of pay, pension vest- civilian jobs upon return from dorsed orders, or a letter from a ing, and credit for the period for duty; and (3) are not discrimi- proper military authority. pension benefit computations; nated against in employment (3) Training or retraining and based on past, present, or future For periods of service of up to other accommodations. This military service. The federal gov- 30 consecutive days, the per- would be particularly applicable ernment is to be a ―model em- son must report back to work in case of a long period of ab- ployer‖ under USERRA. for the first full regularly sched- sence or service-connected dis- uled work period on the first full ability; (4) Special protection Individuals must meet five condi- against discharge, except for calendar day following the com- tions, or "eligibility criteria." In cause. The period of this protec- pletion of the period of service order to be protected by the Act. tion is 180 days following peri- and safe transportation home, (1) They must hold a civilian job, ods of service of 31-180 days. plus an 8-hour period for rest. If (2) must have given written or For periods of service of 181 reporting back within this dead- verbal notice to the civilian em- days or more, it is one year. line is "impossible or unreason- ployer prior to leaving the job for USERRA provides that, if the pe- able" through no fault of the military training or service except riod of service was less than 91 employee, he or she must re- when precluded by military ne- days, the person is entitled to the port back as soon as possible cessity; (3) must not have ex- job he or she would have at- after the expiration of the 8- ceeded the 5-year cumulative tained absent the military ser- hour period. limit on periods of service; (4) vice, provided the person is, or must have been released from After a period of service of 31- can become, qualified for that service under conditions other 180 days, the person must sub- job. If unable to become quali- than dishonorable; and (5) must mit a written or verbal applica- fied for a new job after reason- report back to the civilian job in a tion for reemployment with the able efforts by the employer, the timely manner or submit a timely employer not later than 14 days person is entitled to the job he or application for reemployment. after the completion of the pe- she left. For periods of service ofsite/ riod of service. If submitting the 91 days or more, the employer USERRA applies to voluntary as application within 14 days is may reemploy the returning em- well as involuntary military ser- impossible or unreasonable ployee as above (i.e., position vice, in peacetime as well as through no fault of the em- that would have been attained or The National Committee wartime. The person who is per- ployee, he or she must submit position left), or in a position of for Employer Support of forming the service (or an official the Guard and Reserve the application as soon as pos- "like seniority, status and pay" representative) must give ad- (ESGR), an agency sible thereafter. the duties which the person is vance written or verbal notice to within the Office of the the employer. The notice require- After a period of service of 181 qualified to perform. Assistant Secretary of ment applies to all categories of days or more, the person must USERRA also requires the em- Defense for Reserve Affairs, operates pro- training or service. Notice is not submit an application for reem- ployer to make "reasonable ef- grams directed toward required if precluded by military ployment not later than 90 days forts" to accommodate persons U.S. employers, employ- necessity or, if the giving of such after completion of the period with a disability incurred or ag- ees, and communities to notice is otherwise impossible or of service. These deadlines to gravated during military service. ensure understanding of unreasonable. report to work or apply for reem- If a person returns from military the role of Reserve com- ployment can be extended up to service and is suffering from a ponent members. ESGR USERRA provides that following two years to accommodate a disability that cannot be accom- encourages develop- periods of military service of 31 period during which a person modated by reasonable employer ment of employer poli- days or more, the returning em- cies and practices to was hospitalized for or conva- efforts, the employer is to reem- ployee must, upon the em- facilitate employee par- lescing from an injury or illness ploy the person in some other ployers request, provide docu- ticipation in the Reserve that occurred or was aggra- position he or she is qualified to mentation that establishes components through a vated during a period of military perform and which is the length and character of the ser- network of volunteers. service. "nearest approximation" >>> vice and the timeliness of the
  3. 3. of the position to which the per-son is otherwise entitled, interms of status and pay, with fullseniority.A disability need not be perma-nent to confer rights underUSERRA. For example, if a per-son breaks a leg during annualtraining, the employer may havean obligation to make reason-able efforts to accommodate thebroken leg, or to place the per-son in another position, until theleg has healed.USERRA provides that a denialof employment or an adverseaction taken by an employer willbe unlawful if a service connec-tion was a motivating factor (notnecessarily the only factor) inthe denial or adverse action"unless the employer can provethat the action would have beentaken in the absence of suchmembership, application formembership or obligation."You can contact a NCESGR om-budsman toll-free at (800) 336-4590. Ombudsmen are trainedto provide information and infor-mal mediation services concern-ing civilian job rights of NationalGuard and Reserve members.As mediators, they act as neu-trals, with a goal of helping bringabout solutions to conflicts thatare legal and equitable to eachof the parties involved. Also,check the web for more detailedinformation regarding your rightsand protections under USERRAat or contact thePRNG OSJA.
  4. 4. Talking About Identity Theft: Deter, Detect and Defend credit reports. This matter in par- your name from your accounts, Identity theft occurs ticular is very dangerous to our and drain your savings and even when someone uses your per- troops who may require a secret taking out a loan in your name. sonally identifying information, or higher level of clearance which like your name, Social Security can be affected by this type of Government Documents Fraud number, or credit card number, entries on their credit reports. They can get a driver’s license or without your permission, to The potential for damage, loss, official ID card issued in your commit fraud or other crimes. and stress is considerable. name but with their picture and The Federal Trade Commission use your name to get govern- (FTC) estimates that as many as Skilled identity thieves may use a ment benefits as well as filing a 10 million Americans have their variety of methods to get hold of fraudulent tax return using your identities stolen each year and your information. They may steal information. it has become more present your mail, wallet or purse. They than ever among members of may get personal information Other Fraud our National Guard. In fact, you from you by posing as legitimate There have been reported cases or someone you know may have companies through email, in a where thieves have gotten jobsIdentity theft occurs when experienced some form of iden-your personal information is practice known as ―phishing.‖ Or using others Social Security num-taken and used without your tity theft. they might lie to you on the ber; rented houses or receivedpermission, to commit fraud phone. They may take your infor- medical services. They may giveor other crimes. It is a Thieves rum- mation from businesses or other your personal information toserious crime that can cost mage institutions by stealing personnel police during an arrest. If theyyou time and money, destroy through youryour credit, and ruin your records, bribing or conning an don’t show up for their court trash, find a employee who has access to date, a warrant for arrest is is-good name. bank state- these records, or breaking into sued in your name. ment, and your records electronically. Some misuse your identity theft victims even report How Can You Find Out If Your checking that their information has been Identity Was Stolen? account. Or, stolen by someone they know. Many consumers learn that their maybe rent Once they have your personal identity has been stolen after an apartment information, identity thieves go some damage has been done. using your about their business in a variety You may find out when bill collec- name. Maybe of ways. tion agencies contact you for someone got overdue debts—debts you never a credit card Credit Card Fraud incurred; or, when you apply for a using your Thieves can open new credit card mortgage or car loan—and learn identity and accounts in your name. When that problems with your credit credit history, they use the cards and don’t pay history are holding up the loan. and bought the bills, the delinquent accounts You may find out when you get expensive appear under your name—on something in the mail about an stereo equip- your credit report. They may apartment you never rented, a ment. The change the billing address on house you never bought, or a job crime takes many forms. And your credit card so that you no you never held. maybe you found out about it longer receive bills, and then run The best way to find out is to months later, when your loan up charges on your account. Be- monitor your accounts and bank application was rejected or cause your bills are now sent to a statements each month, and when you noticed charges on different address, it may be some check your credit report on a your credit card statement that time before you realize there’s a regular basis. If you check your you didn’t make. problem. credit report regularly, you may be able to limit the damage Identity theft is serious. People Phone or Utilities Fraud caused by identity theft. The Federal Trade Commis- whose identities have been sion (FTC) is an independ- They can open a phone or wire- stolen can spend hundreds of less account, or run up charges What Should You Do If Your ent agency of the US Gov- ernment. Its principal mis- dollars and dozens of hours on your existing account using Identity Is Stolen? sion is the promotion of cleaning up the mess thieves your name to get utility services Repairing the damage caused by consumer protection and have made of their good name like electricity or cable TV. identity thieves may take time the elimination and pre- and credit record. Consumers and money. Filing a police report, vention of harmfully anti- victimized by identity theft may competitive business prac- Bank/Finance Fraud notifying creditors, and disputing tices, such as coercive lose out on job opportunities, or They can open a bank account in any unauthorized transactions monopoly and more re- be denied loans for education, your name and write bad checks are steps you must take to re- cently the rise in identity housing, or cars because of authorizing electronic transfers in store your good name. More spe- theft. negative information on their
  5. 5. cific information on what to do ■Never click on links sent in make.can be found in the Federal unsolicited emails; instead, type DEFEND against identity theft asTrade Commission’s (FTC) guide, in a Web address you know. Use soon as you suspect a problem.Take Charge: Fighting Back firewalls, anti-spyware, and anti-Against Identity Theft, which virus software to protect your ■Place a ―Fraud Alert‖ on youralong with many other great re- home computer; keep them up- credit reports, and review the re-sources can be found in the to-date. Visit OnGuar- ports carefully. The alert tellsFTC’s website at for more informa- creditors to follow certain proce-Repairing the damage can be a tion. dures before they open new ac-costly, time-consuming, and counts in your name or make cer-stressful process. And the more ■Don’t use an obvious pass- tain changes to your existing ac-time that goes by before you de- word like your birth date, your counts. The three nationwide con-tect the problem, the more time it mother’s maiden name, or the sumer reporting companies havemay require to resolve it. last four digits of your Social toll-free numbers for placing an Security number. initial 90-day fraud alert; a call to What Can You Do To Help Fight ■Keep your personal informa- one company is sufficient: Identity Theft? tion in a secure place at home, Awareness is an effective Equifax: 1-800-525-6285 especially if you have room- Experian: 1-888-EXPERIANweapon against identity theft. mates, employ outside help, orAwareness of how information is TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289 are having work done in yourstolen—and what you can do to house. Placing a fraud alert entitles youprotect yours - Awareness of the to free copies of your credit re-need to monitor your personal DETECT suspicious activity by ports. Look for inquiries from com-information to uncover any prob- routinely monitoring your finan- panies you haven’t contacted,lems—quickly. And, awareness of cial accounts and billing state- accounts you didn’t open, andwhat to do when you suspect ments. debts on your accounts that youyour identity has been stolen. Be alert to signs that require can’t explain.Armed with the knowledge of how immediate attention: ■Close accounts. Close any ac-to protect yourself and take ac- ■Mail or bills that do not arrive counts that have been tamperedtion, you can make identity as expected with or established fraudulently.thieves’ jobs much more difficult. ■Unexpected credit cards or - Call the security or fraud depart- account statements ments of each company where an Click on the Video toWhile nothing can guarantee that ■Denials of credit for no appar- account was opened or changed learn how to avoid iden-you won’t become a victim of without your okay. Follow up in tity theft – and learn what ent reasonidentity theft, you can take spe- to do if your identity is ■Calls or letters about pur- writing, with copies of supporting stolen. Businesses cancific steps to minimize your risk, chases you did not make documents. learn how to help theirand minimize the damage if a - Use the ID Theft Affidavit at customers deal with iden-problem develops. These steps Inspect: to support your tity theft, as well as howmake it more difficult for identity ■Your credit report. Credit re- written statement. to prevent problems in thethieves to steal your identity. It’s first place. Law enforce- ports have information about - Ask for written verification that ment can get resourcesabout following the ―3 D’s‖ of you, including what accounts the disputed account has been and learn how to helpidentity theft protection—Deter, you have and your bill paying closed and the fraudulent debts victims of identity theft.Detect, Defend history. discharged.DETER identity thieves by safe- - Keep copies of documents andguarding your information. The law requires the major na- records of your conversations tionwide consumer reporting about the theft.■Shred financial documents and companies—Equifax, Experian, ■File a police report. File a reportpaperwork with personal informa- and TransUnion—to give you a with law enforcement officials totion before you discard them. free copy of your credit report help you with creditors who may each year if you ask for it. Visit want proof of the crime.■Protect your Social Security www.AnnualCreditReport.comnumber. Don’t carry your Social or call 1-877-322-8228, a ser- ■Report your complaint to theSecurity card in your wallet or vice created by these three Federal Trade Commission. Yourwrite your Social Security number companies, to order your free The Guide for Assisting report helps law enforcement offi- Identity Theft Victims wason a check. Give it out only if ab- credit reports each year. You cials across the country in their developed by the Federalsolutely necessary or ask to use also can write: Annual Credit investigations. Trade Commission (FTC)another identifier. Report Request Service, P.O. - Online: to help attorneys and - By phone: 1-877-ID-THEFT victim service providers■Don’t give out personal informa- Box 105281, Atlanta, GA - By mail: Identity Theft Clearing- chart their way throughtion on the phone, through the 30348-5281. house, Federal Trade Commis- and resolve legal prob-mail, or over the Internet unless ■Your financial statements. sion, Washington, DC 20580 lems that pro bono clientsyou have initiated the contact Review financial accounts and may have following the theft of their identity.and know who you are dealing billing statements regularly,with. looking for charges you did not
  6. 6. tion cancelled. The Army has tary Departments and their du- On Dec. 22, 2010, Presi- ceased all pending investiga- ties. The Chaplain Corps’ First dent Obama signed into law a tions, discharges, and adminis- Amendment freedoms and their deferred repeal of DADT. The trative proceedings commenced duty to care for all have not statute directed that repeal changed. All Soldiers will con- will go into effect 60 days after tinue to serve with others who CJCS, SecDef and the Presi- may hold different views and dent certify that DoD has beliefs, and they will be ex- "prepared the necessary poli- pected to treat everyone with cies and regulations" to effec- respect. tuate repeal, and that imple- mentation of these policies 5. BENEFITS: and regulations is consistent Eligibility standards for bene- BACKGROUND fits remain the same as they with the standards of military"Dont ask, dont tell" (DADT) was readiness, military effective- currently are. And it should bethe official US policy on homo- ness, unit cohesion, and re- noted that the repeal does notsexuals serving in the military cruiting and retention of the alter compensation or benefitsfrom December 21, 1993 to based on marriage or depend-September 20, 2011. The policy Armed Forces. Under Secretary solely under DADT. Statements of Defense for Personnel and about sexual orientation are no ency. In accordance with Title 1,prohibited military personnelfrom discriminating against or Readiness Clifford Stanley was longer a bar to military service. Section 7 of the US Codeharassing closeted homosexuals designated to lead a highlevel Former Soldiers discharged un- (Defense of Marriage Act-or bisexual service members or working group (Repeal Imple- der DADT may apply for re-entry, DOMA), marriage is a legal un-applicants, while barring openly mentation Team) to facilitate and will be evaluated according ion between one man and onegay, lesbian, or bisexual persons woman as husband and wife.from military service. The restric- the realization of these condi- to the same standards as all tions. On July 21, the Secretary other applicants for re-entry. The Service members will continuetions were mandated by UnitedStates federal law (10 USC of Defense and Chairman of the Army will continue to use exist- to have various benefits for654). Joint Chiefs of Staff signed the ing policy and procedures to which they can designate bene- certification. On July 22, the determine the appropriate rank ficiaries regardless of sexualThe policy prohibited people who orientation, such as: Service"demonstrate a propensity or President signed the certifica- and time-in grade credit tion. Repeal occurred Septem- awarded. Time-in-service will be members’ Group Life Insuranceintent to engage in homosexualacts" from serving in the US ber 20, 2011, at 0001 hrs EDT. awarded. Beneficiary; Post-Vietnam-Eraarmed forces, because their Veterans Assistance Programpresence "would create an unac- Quoting the Chief, National 2. STANDARDS OF CONDUCT Beneficiary; Montgomery G.I.ceptable risk to the high stan- Guard Bureau, Gen Craig R. APPLY EQUALLY TO EVERYONE: Bill Death Beneficiary; Benefici-dards of morale, good order and Mckinley (USAF), -―The repeal of Existing standards of conduct ary for Death Gratuity; Benefici-discipline, and unit cohesion DADT makes it imperative for all continue to apply to all Soldiersthat are the essence of military ary for Final Settlement of Ac-capability." The act prohibited leaders to ensure each Service regardless of sexual orientation. counts: Deceased Members;any homosexual or bisexual member is judged solely on All Soldiers are responsible for Wounded Warrior Designatedperson from disclosing his/her individual merit. All National upholding and maintaining the Caregiver; Thrift Savings Plansexual orientation or from Guard members must serve in high standards of the Army at all Beneficiary; and Survivor Bene-speaking about any homosexual an environment that is free of times and in all places. fit Plan Beneficiary. The Depart-relationships, including mar- discrimination and harassment. ment will continue to study eligi-riages or other familial attrib- 3. PERSONAL PRIVACY:utes, while serving in the US We all must understand and bility standards for existing support this significant change The creation of separate bath-armed forces. The act specified room facilities or living quarters benefits to determine those, ifthat service members who dis- in the US military. Every mem- any, which should be changed.close that they are homosexual ber of the Army and Air National based on sexual orientation isor engage in homosexual con- Guard must foster a climate of prohibited, and Commandersduct should be separated may not establish practices that 6. EQUAL OPPORTUNITY:(discharged) except when a fairness and prevent institu- Sexual orientation will not be tional and individual discrimina- physically segregate Soldiersservice members conduct was according to sexual orientation. considered along with race,"for the purpose of avoiding or tory practices. Leaders must color, religion, sex, and nationalterminating military service" or ensure all National Guard Sol- Consistent with current policy, Commanders will continue to origin as a class under the Mili-when it "would not be in the best diers and Airmen understandinterest of the armed forces". maintain the discretion to alter tary Equal Opportunity (MEO) that even a single act of dis- program and will not be dealt crimination, harassment, or berthing or billeting assign-The "dont ask" part of the DADT ments in accordance with Army with through the MEO complaintpolicy specified that superiors demeaning the dignity of an- process. All Soldiers, regardlessshould not initiate investigation other person will not be toler- policy in the interest of main- taining morale, good order and of sexual orientation, are enti-of a service members orienta- ated.‖tion without witnessing disal- discipline, consistent with per- tled to an environment freelowed behaviors, though credi- 1. ACCESSIONS & SEPARATION formance of the mission. from personal, social, or institu-ble evidence of homosexual POLICIES: tional barriers that prevent Sol-behavior could be used to initi- 4. MORAL AND RELIGIOUS diers from rising to the highest The Army will no longer sepa-ate an investigation. Unauthor- CONCERNS: level of responsibility possible.ized investigations and harass- rate Soldiers under DADT. Sol- There are no changes regarding Harassment or abuse based onment of suspected servicemen diers who had an approved Soldiers’ exercise of religious sexual orientation is unaccept-and women led to an expansion separation date forecasted af-of the policy to "dont ask, dont beliefs, nor are there any able and will be dealt with ter repeal that was based solelytell, dont pursue, dont harass." changes to policies concerning through command or inspector on DADT will have that separa- the Chaplain Corps of the Mili- general channels. >>>
  7. 7. 7. DUTY ASSIGNMENTS: 8. MEDICAL POLICY: 10. COLLECTION ANDThere are no changes to duty There are no changes to exist- RETENTION OF SEXUALassignment policies. All Soldiers ing medical policies. ORIENTATION DATA:will continue to be eligible for Sexual orientation is a per-world-wide assignment without 9. RELEASE AND SERVICE sonal and private matter. Theconsideration of sexual orienta- COMMITMENTS: Army is not authorized totion. Soldiers assigned to duty, There will be no new policy to request, collect, or maintainor otherwise serving in coun- allow for release from service information about the sexualtries in which homosexual con- commitments for Soldiers who orientation of Soldiers exceptduct is prohibited or restricted, are opposed to repeal of DADT when it is an essential part ofwill abide by the guidance pro- or opposed to serving with gay an otherwise appropriatevided to them by their local and lesbian Soldiers. investigation or other officialcommanders. action.SOCIAL MEDIA FOR SOLDIERS AND ARMY PERSONNELFrom the US Army Social Media Handbook (August 2011) OPSEC AWARENESS Commenting, posting, or linking important that Army leaders, to material that violates the Soldiers and Army civilians un- T he primary concern UCMJ or basic rules of Soldier derstand what kind of data theywhen using social media is conduct is prohibited. Social are broadcasting and what theymaintaining operations security. media provides the opportunity can do to protect themselvesIt’s important to know that so- for Soldiers to speak freely and their families. Geotaggingcial media is a quickly evolving about what they’re up to or photos and using location-means of distributing informa- what their interests are. How- based social networking appli-tion and that means OPSEC is ever, Soldiers are subject to cations is growing in popularity,more important than ever be- UCMJ even when off duty, so but in certain situations, expos-fore. All Army leaders should talking negatively about super- ing specific geographical loca-communicate with their Sol- visors, or releasing sensitive tion can be devastating to Armydiers about the risks of using information is punishable under operations. “Our adversaries are trollingsocial media and incorporate the UCMJ. It’s important that all social networks, blogs and Soldiers should never tag pho- forums, trying to find sensitivesocial media into their regular Soldiers know that once they tos with geographical location information they can useOPSEC training. log on to a social media plat- when loading to photo sharing about our military goals and form, they still represent the JOINING SOCIAL sites like Flickr and Picasa. Sol- objectives. Therefore, it is Army. diers should not use location- imperative that all Soldier and NETWORKS MAINTAINING OPSEC based social networking appli- Family members understandSoldiers will naturally seek out Sharing what seems to be even cations when deployed, at train- the importance of practicinginvolvement in social media trivial information online can be ing or while on duty at locations good operations securityplatforms if they haven’t al- dangerous to loved ones and where presenting exact grid measures.”ready. Social media helps indi- the fellow Soldiers in the unit -- coordinates could damage Armyviduals with similar interests -Sgt. Maj. of the Army (Ret.) and may even get them killed. operations. While Soldiers areconnect and interact. Soldiers Kenneth O. Preston Americas enemies scour blogs, engaged in Army operations,are authorized to use and be- forums, chat rooms and per- they should turn off the GPSlong to a variety of social media sonal websites to piece to- function of their smartphones.platforms as long as their in- gether information that can be Failure to do so could result in “Members of the Armyvolvement does not violate unit used to harm the United States damage to the mission and may Family are experiencing apolicy and the basic guidelines and its Soldiers. The adversary - even put families at risk. special time in their lives.of the Uniform Code of Military - Al Qaeda and domestic terror- They have a lot to shareJustice. DO NOT VIOLATE ists and criminals for instance with Family, friends and LAY OUT THE – have made it clear they are COPYRIGHT AND others. Social media is an opportunity to instantly GUIDELINES looking. When using social me- TRADEMARK reach out and connectLeaders must engage their Sol- dia, avoid mentioning rank, unit Soldiers cannot include any regardless of time, spacediers on social media use. All locations, deployment dates, copyrighted or trademarked or distance. The Armyleaders must communicate names, or equipment specifica- material on their social media encourages members ofsocial media expectations with tions and capabilities. platforms. This includes embed- the Army Family to usetheir Soldiers. It is important to ding a song, or linking to unat- social media to connect GEOTAGGING AND tributed artwork. Social mediaoutline unit policy and make and tell their stories, but itsure all Soldiers know what they LOCATION-BASED platforms exist to help individu- also advises everyone tocan and cannot do when using SOCIAL NETWORKING als connect and express their do this in a safe andvarious social media platforms. The Army is always working to personalities, but this should be secure manner.”- protect itself against security done without using copyrighted FOLLOW THE UCMJ breaches, but with new tech- material unless they are author- US Army Social MediaSoldiers using social media nologies come new risks. To- ized to do so by the copyright or Handbookmust abide by the Uniform Code day, more than ever, it is vitally trademark owner.of Military Justice at all times.
  8. 8. and Kaffee is discover-PUERTO RICO NATIONAL GUARDOFFICE OF THE STAFF JUDGE ADVOCATE In this dramatic ing that he is really cut courtroom thriller, Lt. out for trial work. The100 General Esteves Street Daniel Kaffee (Cruise) , defense is originallySan Juan, Puerto Rico 00901-1400 a Navy lawyer who has based upon the fact thatPhone: 787-289-1400 Ext. 1030 never seen the inside of the victim, PFC Santi-Fax: 787-289-1431 the courtroom, defends ago, was given a "CODE two stubborn Marines RED". who have been accused of murdering a col- league at the Guan- Santiago was basically ahttp:// tanamo Bay Naval Sta- screw-up. At Gitmo, screw-ups arent tion. ated. Especially by Col. Nathan Jessup/PRNG.OSJA Kaffee is known as be- (Nicholson). In Cuba, ing lazy and had ar- Jessup and two senior ranged for a plea bar- officers try to give all the gain. Downeys Aunt help they can, but Kaf- Ginny appoints Cmdr. fee knows somethings Galloway (Moore) to fishy. In the conclusion represent him. Also on of the film, the fireworks the legal staff is Lt. Sam are set off by a confron- Weinberg. The team tation between Jessup The Servicemembers Civil rounds up many facts and Kaffee. Relief Act (SCRA) The 21st Century Puertorri- m a t u r e mendous. It is a great can Veterans Bill of Rights scholarship, source of information Military Personnel & Fami- a clearly that I constantly use for lies Fighting Against Iden- wr i t te n preparing for Law of tity Theft guide to International Armed Conflict briefings Humanitarian Law and How to File a Complaint Law Of Armed Conflict for units about to be with the Federal Trade for the student who deployed overseas. Commission comes to the class- room knowing little or It provides good exam- Deter. Detect. Defend. nothing of this topic‖ ples, drawn from lessons Avoid ID Theft and as ―an excellent learned in past conflicts Top 10 Reasons to Hire resource for military such as World War II up Guard & Reserve Members officers of all grades to the Long War (also and is absolutely indis- known as the Global War Tips for Employers on their pensable for every Guard & Reserve Employ- deployed judge advo- on Terror). It also pro- ees from Employer Support cate."1 vides case law from both of the Guard & Reserve the U.S. Supreme Court Recently this book was (ESGR) mentioned as a wel- and other forums. It is come addition to those an excellent read for Military One Source: A texts used while prepar- those officers and NCOs Valuable Tool for Military Review By: ing a Law of War class. who have decided to Members & their Families MAJ William E. O’Connor In his article, Teaching a make the military their How to Dispute Credit Re- Law of War Class, MAJ J. career. ―The Law of Armed Con- Jeremy Marsh, USAF, port Errors flict: International Hu- published in the Army 1. Foreword, The Law of Credit Repair: How to Help manitarian Law in War Lawyer, June 2010, MAJ Yourself introduces law students Armed Conflict, Interna- Marsh described this and undergraduates to book as relevant, com- tional Humanitarian Law The Uniformed Services the law of war in an age of prehensive and very ac- in War, written by BG Pat- Employment and Reem- terrorism‖. These words cessible. rick Finnegan, Dean of the ployment Rights Act mark the beginning of a Academic Board, United My experience in using (USERRA) Fact Sheet textbook that has been States Military Academy. described as ―a work of this book has been tre- Department of Labor: Online USERRA Advisor ***The materials and information on this newsletter are made available by the PRNG OSJA for informational and entertainment purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice. This newsletter is not intended as adver- tising and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. Persons reading the information on this newsletter should not act upon the information provided without seeking professional legal counsel.***