Many Bragg Soldiers Oppose Gender Separation in Training, Barracks
Posted March 10, 1998 6:00 a.m. EST
FORT BRAGG — After allegations of sexual misconduct over the past year, a national panel has taken a look at the way our military treats men and women, how the train, and where they live. The panel recommended complete separation of the sexes. But the military says no way.
Army, Navy, and Air Force leaders have all decided to reject that recommendation. The Fort Bragg soldiers with whom we talked overwhelmingly agree that separation of the sexes would be a setback.
It's something nearly every Ft. Bragg soldier has come to accept -- men and women training side-by-side and living in the same barracks.
As far as training together, two female soldiers admitted that women can get by with less effort because of the difference in sexes, but only in a limited capacity.
As for living in the same barracks, every soldier we talked with said it's not a problem.
Regardless of the motive, the soldiers said that separating the sexes would give the appearance that male and female soldiers are not equal.
The final decision is now up to Defense Secretary William Cohen. But, all three services will urge him not to take this step.