We have numerous tools at our disposal to correct substandard performance. Soldiers who are immature, lack discipline, or simply fail to follow instructions need your help. Two methods are explained in this chapter; Corrective Training and Revocation of Privileges. Both of these are techniques used by proactive leaders to get a Soldier’s attention and set them on the right path.
Commanders, unit leaders, and noncommissioned officers (NCOs) must deal with a broad spectrum of misconduct. The most serious cases are crimes familiar to a civilian society and serious military offenses, such as homicides, assaults, drug-related offenses, and desertion. Less serious civilian and military offenses are loosely described as minor offenses. The least serious are insignificant acts of misconduct that may not even rise to the level of an offense. These may be addressed without the necessity of punishment.
When a Soldier commits an offense, you have a wide variety of options. Each option has its own attributes and values. When considering corrective action for misconduct, use the least severe measure that will accomplish your goal. Your choice will depend in part on the severity and nature of the misconduct, coupled with your intended goal in addressing the misconduct. Punishment generally has one or more of the following goals:
- To protect society against a repetition of the offense.
- To reform the offender so he will not repeat the offense.
- To deter others from considering and committing such an offense.
Minor offenses may justify nonjudicial action under Article 15, UCMJ. Imposition of punishment under Article 15 procedures is restricted to a Commander. Your options for less significant misconduct can be loosely collected under the title of adverse administrative actions.
Corrective training should emphasize correcting misconduct and improving Soldier performance. The majority of Soldier misconduct does not result from intentional or gross failure to comply with standards of military conduct. Instead, misconduct results from simple neglect, forgetfulness, ignorance, laziness, inattention to instruction, sloppy habits, immaturity, and difficulty in adjusting to the disciplined military life. Implicit in adverse administrative actions is the belief that the offender can, with proper guidance, become an efficient and competent Soldier.