Moral Standards for Military Enlistment: Screening Procedures and Impact
ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE (FORCE MANAGEMENT AND PERSONNEL) WASHINGTON DC
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Each military service sets moral character enlistment standards dealing with the commission of criminal offenses, deviant behavior, and substance abuse. Individuals with certain patterns of past behavior are ineligible for service, and those with less serious offense histories can enter only after an individual review and the granting of a moral waiver. This report describes current moral enlistment standards for each Service, including disqualifying conditions, histories requiring moral waivers, classification of offenses, waiver authority levels, and waiver decision criteria. The numbers and percentages of accessions entering each Service between FY 1977 and FY 1981 with each type of moral waiver are presented, and moral waiver accessions are compared to accessions without moral waivers in terms of education, aptitude, race, and sex. First-term attrition rates for accessions with each type of moral waiver are provided along with the corresponding rates for accessions who did not require waivers. Recommendations are made for the standardization and automation of moral character information and for a reconceptualization of the moral character screening process.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations