The Impact of Drug Abuse on Tank Crew Cohesion.
WALTER REED ARMY INST OF RESEARCH WASHINGTON DC
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This medical research project was undertaken to validate previous observations of drug use patterns as detractions from trust, confidence and committment among soldiers. Results indicate differences in drug use patterns exist among crew members as well as differences in perceptions about using and non-using crew members. Five general conclusions can be drawn. First of all, cohesion is not a unitary concept. It has a task-related and a social-related dimension that are inter-related. Secondly, tank crews are composed of two distinct groups - Tank Commanders and crewmen Drivers, Loaders, Gunners. These two groups differ in demography, drug use pattern and in their responses to the cohesion questions. Third, the more responsible and important the incumbents duty position within a crew, the less likely that soldier is to use drugs. Fourth, the perception one crew member holds about another is related to similarity in or difference in the drug use pattern of the two soldiers. Differences in the level of use also affected soldiers perceptions of each other. Fifth, drug use appears to have a greater influence on the social aspects of the crew member relationship than the job aspects. The cohesive influence drug use has in the social realm may be due more to turbulence in the crews than drug use, per se.
- Sociology and Law
- Medicine and Medical Research