Porn Sweep or Witch Hunt on U.S. Air Force Bases? (News)

Posted on January 24, 2013, in Military, News

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By Chris Carroll
January 19, 2013
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WASHINGTON — The Air Force announced Friday it had found hundreds of examples of pornography and tens of thousands of other inappropriate items in a recent sweep of bases and facilities worldwide.

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III in late November ordered wing commanders to scour work areas for pornographic or offensive materials that sexually objectify men or women, and for other “unprofessional” items.
Welsh’s order came on the heels of media reports of sexual harassment and hostile working conditions for female airmen, and in the midst of a growing scandal centered on Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, over sexual misconduct by Air Force instructors toward trainees.

Gen. Larry Spencer, the Air Force vice chief of staff, told Stars and Stripes on Friday that the inspection was aimed at making sure current policies and standards on workplace conduct are being enforced. There were “no issues” found at most installations, he said.

“We want folks to come in to work every day and feel like they’re in a professional environment and feel like they’re respected,” Spencer said.

Inspections took place in recent weeks at 97 active duty installations and offices worldwide. They uncovered about 32,000 items that fell into three categories: pornography, unprofessional material and inappropriate or offensive material. Inspections at Air National Guard installations are just starting, Air Force officials said.

The majority of 631 items deemed pornographic were uncovered in Air Education and Training Command, which oversees training at Lackland and other bases. While most were items like magazines or computer videos that were removed or deleted, investigators also identified 11 pornographic computer images that were “preserved for evidence,” according to a database provided by the Air Force.

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