USSOCOM ARE Team,
I hope everyone enjoyed their much-deserved holiday break. Without question, 2020 was a challenging year, and as we now start the new year, we still face many of those same challenges. I'm hopeful that the worst is behind us, but I ask that everyone remain vigilant and focused on the mission. Overcoming challenges is what we do best and I have no doubt that we'll pull out of this as a stronger Army, overall.
For those of you who are not yet aware, we've welcomed three new AGR members to the ARE team. We now have additional support in our Personnel and Operations sections and I expect service quality and response times to dramatically improve. I appreciate everyone's patience over the past 11 months, as we worked through personnel turnover and regulatory adjustments, while in the midst of a global pandemic.
For those of you that have not turned in your Yearly Training Plans - do so now. We have been strongly advocating for earlier AT order publication times (no less than 30 days prior to order the start date), but in order to make this happen, we need everyone to make a strong effort to submit the RFOs at least 60 days out. Doing so allows our support teams to properly forecast their budgeting requirements, so help us by getting these in as early as possible.
As a reminder, FY21 training priorities are as follows:
- Duty Military Occupational Specialty Qualification (DMOSQ)
- Professional Military Education (PME)
- Mission Essential Task (METs)
- Army Warrior Task Training
- Individual Weapons Qualification
Regarding unit readiness, each of you must ensure currency on all of your annual medical requirements. The bottom line is that the staff needs to get better at enforcing the standards and those of you who have not made medical readiness a priority, need to start doing so today. You are expected to complete a PHA and dental exam every 12 months and should start scheduling your appointments when you are within 90 days of your next required examination date. We would very much appreciate your voluntary support with this.
As of 30 September 2020, new Army Physical Fitness Tests (APFT) will no longer be conducted by any Reserve units. The Army has transitioned to the Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT), but its implementation is temporarily deferred, until a yet to be determined future date. If you achieved a passing score on the APFT between March 2019 and March 2020, you are considered current on your physical fitness requirements. However, Army height and weight requirements are not suspended as part of this change and you are still required to conduct height and weight measurements every six months. The temporary suspension of the ACFT requirements does not mean that you should neglect your physical fitness training. We work within the SOF community and will maintain an appropriate military appearance and level of physical fitness, in line with USSOCOM expectations. I expect you to be good ambassadors for the Army Reserves and I appreciate those of you who continue to do this without reminder.
COVID-19 is still a very real threat to our military population, so continue taking proper precautions to protect yourselves and your families. You will always be the Army's most valuable asset and, more than ever now, we need you to remain fit to fight and ready for action at all times! I appreciate everyone's hard work and efforts and I'm proud to serve as the USSOCOM ARE Senior Enlisted Advisor. I look forward to another great year serving with the ARE team.
-MSG Ortiz, SEA