Equal Opportunity:

Problems Identified in Draft Report on Race Relations Training Programs

FPCD-76-91: Published: Apr 18, 1978. Publicly Released: Apr 18, 1978.

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A draft report sent to the Secretary of Defense in 1976 identified certain problems in race relations training programs given at selected Army and Air Force installations. The report noted that the services had no formal method of evaluating the effectiveness of their training, that the focus of the training was misplaced, and that the training as it was given would not change discriminatory behavior. A recent follow-up assessment indicated that current race relations training has led to a decrease in discrimination complaints and racial incidents at military installations. Although race relations education is still provided as part of basic training and is given again later in the enlistment period, it is not now offered in individual Army units unless racial unrest at a particular installation warrants such training. Both services have now instituted programs to perform periodic qualitative evaluations of their training programs. Revised training curricula in both services are job relevant. The Army's curriculum focuses on individual and group situations and recommends strategies for dealing with such situations. The Air Force's seminars examine how discrimination in the work unit affects job performance. Both services said that their training personnel receive high-quality training, and the Army's trainers have the same career-enhancing opportunities as do personnel assigned to other specialties. A sufficiently high degree of support of the training is present in both services.

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