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Sexual Harassment Caused Torment,Trauma, Depression

Date Posted: 2000-12-22

I have a disturbing but true story that not only concerns me, but other female military members. On June 5th 2000 I initiated a complaint that would change the rest of my career. Respecting my chain of command I filed sexual harassment charges against my NCOIC and another NCO in my work section. Not only have I endured persecution to the maximum, but also so has my six-year-old daughter who now lives with my parents. She wants to know why her mother is not mentally capable of caring for her. Prior to my complaint I sought advice from one of the chaplains after undergoing sixteen months of phone calls, late night visits, jokes, and sexual invitations. I came to the conclusion that I needed to stand for what I believed in. needless to say I was tormented by friends and co-workers, called every bad name one could imagine, and ultimately attempted suicide. Six months later I am now pending a medical separation for clinical depression to say the least.

Prior to these events I held no such trauma. I have never received any type of reprimand during my 7 ˝ years in the military, not even so much as an Letter of Reprimand or article 15. I was sworn in as SSgt on 1 October 00, something I know I deserve, unlike the individuals who ruined my career. I’m sure there are many who want to know why I felt there was no way out, but to contemplate ending my life. A single mother, who has almost completed her Bachelor’s degree, has endured the ultimate in betrayal. The results of the case were too dreadful for me to face. I have been told that the NCOIC received a UIF, even with all the evidence towards him to include fondling me and declining me various temporary duties because I wouldn’t “give in.” The other individual received an LOR. As for me, I was PCA’d to a unit and had no say in the matter, and I still see the individual who received the LOR walking through my new duty section smiling and laughing in my face. I have sought help from the Inspector General Commander referred me to Social Actions because Sexual Harrassment is not an” IG matter.”

Another official complaint was made to social actions In November this year. I was told by Social actions that things fell through the cracks because the other females in my office, as well as others in surrounding offices, were afraid to speak up. Most of this is due to the fact that the two individuals I filed the complaint against are high profile individuals within the 390th Intel squadron. Everyone from the Flight Chief to the Commander highly praised them. This was the main reason I hesitated so long in making my complaint. Others have spoken out now, but when the ball falls in the court of the commander who loves these individuals, what purpose does it serve to stand up for what is right?

Every since I raised my hand and was sworn in I could recall each commander I ever worked under proclaiming his/her zero tolerance for sexual harassment. I felt proud to know I was in the United States Air Force, mainly because I knew that while I was protecting others I too was being protected against such adversities. However, that has all changed. This NCO who once considered herself a recruiter for the Air Force discourages any and everyone who considers joining. I just hope the Air Force realizes that they have just lost one of their most dedicated individuals to the selfishness, and poor judgment of a few.

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