Top military service leaders have zero tolerance for retaliation against service members who speak out about unsafe housing conditions, they told lawmakers Thursday, according to Military Times.
“I want all of the soldiers out there to know their chain of command is now fully engaged,” Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said. “It’s our personal responsibility, and we will be held personally accountable for the condition of their living quarters or their houses.”
The Senate Armed Services Committee was looking into recent reports about unsafe conditions in private housing across all the military services.
The article said military families in attendance cheered when Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) said he “would recommend these issues be referred to the Department of Justice.”
The services are working together to develop a “tenant’s bill of rights” over the next three months.
Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller told lawmakers that leaders “took our eye off the ball” instead of realizing that housing impacts readiness.
“We need our families ready,” Neller said. “Our Marines can’t be ready if [they’re] not living in a safe, secure place.”
Video of the hearing and witnesses’ prepared testimony is available on the committee website.
A Fort Knox Housing resident brings up concerns during an on-base listening session March 4. U.S. Army photo by Eric Pilgrim