Washington – When a senior officer of the National Guard, Major General Eric Little, was reported for behavior that created discomfort for women in his office, after a government investigation, he was dismissed from his position. A government investigation was carried out. He stated, “Women in the Air Force are sensitive. I know this because all my best friends are women.”
According to records obtained by USA Today, Little was fired from his position as the National Guard’s senior official following an inquiry by the Army’s Inspector General.The conclusion of the complaint against Little, in his role as the top human resources officer for the Guard, was that he led an office that was the center of a “culturally hostile environment.”
They are in charge of initiatives to stop sexual harassment and promote equality.
The military has been battling concerns of sexual harassment inside its ranks since Little’s discharge.
Investigations on the issue have frequently made reluctance senior officers make major reforms.
President Joe Biden took the final step in limiting commanders’ ability to pursue sexual harassment charges last week when he signed an executive order that the Pentagon has long opposed.
By 2021, cases of sexual harassment in the military will have risen to their highest levels ever, according to statistics from the Pentagon.
Don Christianson, the former chief prosecutor of the Air Force who now practices in the Solomon Law Firm, stated that the allegations against Little are similar to the “fraternity house” behavior that can contribute to a culture of sexual harassment.
In the accusation against him, it is claimed that there have been instances of “blatant sexism” and that Little previously held the position of senior officer in the Guard’s budget office. According to the military, the Inspector General verified the complaints against LittleThe military refused to go into any detail about the accusations or findings.
He was let go for “failure of leadership,” according to records obtained by USA Today.
A complaint against Little was filed in October 2020, shortly before his promotion to the two-star general positionThe military human resources office, which is in charge of overseeing initiatives to avoid sexual harassment and guarantee equitable access to opportunities for the 450,000 personnel of the Army and Air National Guard, was taken over by Little in the same month.
He worked for the National Guard Bureau, a body in charge of state guard troops.
A Joint Chiefs of Staff member serves as its commanding officer.
The USA Today Network, a part of which the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is, found in an investigation conducted in 2021 that reports of sexual harassment in National Guard units had risen by more than threefold from 2019 compared to the data from 2009, when there were more than 600 reported sexual offenses.
The Guard has also witnessed racial prejudice in situations that required years to resolve. In one case, a Black Guard member in Maryland saw her complaint about being forced to wear chains for discipline for years.
A spokesperson for the military said in a statement that appropriate action has been taken against General Little. The United States Army Inspector General Agency has concluded its investigation into the charges made against Major General Eric K. Little, according to Cynthia Smith, with numerous findings that have been confirmed. After receiving the necessary administrative reprimands, General Little is currently serving as the Special Assistant to the Chief of the National Guard Bureau. We believe this dispute has been resolved.
The military refuses to offer any additional information regarding Little’s administrative action.Regular officers who are forcibly removed from their positions often wait for service retirement while being placed in special assistant positionsLittle declined to comment when contacted.
Little has been accused of engaging in behaviour that was “counterproductive to professional military behaviour” at the budget office where he worked prior to his promotion, creating a “toxic environment of unprofessional behaviour that fosters disorder, (National Guard) leadership disrepute, favouritism, sexism, and the unchecked misuse of authority.”
According to former Air Force Chief Prosecutor Christianson, the Little case shows how slowly the service has responded to complaints of sexual harassment and assault.
Christianson remarked, “I don’t understand how the military has gotten so bad in this case.” “He has acknowledged time and time again that workplace culture affects sexual harassment and assault, but they are slow to act and slow to hold those responsible accountable.”
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