Army Plans 6- or 7-Year Postings to Cut Stress, Build Unit Cohesion
The Army intends to give soldiers six- or seven-year assignments in the same U.S. posts to reduce stress on military families and build cohesion in fighting units, officials said Monday.
That would double the current average stay at a given American post for most officers and enlisted personnel.
Brig. Gen. Sean Byrne, the Army’s director of personnel policy, told reporters the change was taking place alongside efforts to revamp the Army into a structure of largely independent fighting brigades.
What also will change is how soldiers train and advance through the ranks. Often they must jump unit to unit, and post to post, to attend schools and advance their careers. With the Army deploying combat units so often to Afghanistan, Iraq and other areas during the last decade, however, some soldiers are perpetually in motion.
Under the new plan, which starts in September for some units, soldiers will stay in the same units, or, failing that, transfer to another on the same base, Byrne said.
“This is going to be a major cultural change,” Byrne said.
Each of the brigades will be on a relatively fixed schedule of training and will be designated to be available for deployment during a specific period. This will provide families some idea when the soldier will be overseas.
The move will affect soldiers based inside the United States. Rotations to South Korea still will last a year, the Army said.