Inside the 908th: Equal Opportunity office - Respect, inclusion, civility and dignity

  • Published
  • By Maj. John T. Stamm
  • 908th Airlift Wing

The United States Air Force Reserve Command is an organization dedicated to the diversity and inclusion of its members. And, while a utopian state may not yet have been reached, that ideal is the desired outcome.

Equal Opportunity Airmen, Air Force Specialty Code 3F4X1, enhance the Air Force mission by promoting an environment of equity, dignity and respect through positive human relations and teamwork, conducting administrative functions to support EO and human relations education programs.

“The mission of the EO is to eradicate and prohibit unlawful discrimination based on race, sex, religion, national origin, or sexual orientation,” said 908th Airlift Wing Equal Opportunity Director Master Sgt. Toni Page. “Airmen should have opportunities based on their merit and capability and not be judged unfairly based on some demographic.”

Airmen in this specialty focus on identifying and preventing actual and potential complaints and incidents, emphasizing areas that undermine the readiness posture and human relations climate, providing advice, consultation, education, and alternative dispute resolution to assist commanders and directors in resolving conditions that impact operations and mission effectiveness.

Conflict resolution is a main function of the EO office.

“It’s not just a place to come and complain,” said Page. “We explore issues that sometimes impact mission performance and figure out where there are barriers inhibiting Airmen. We can’t always be on the same page, but helping all parties involved come to a mutual understanding is beneficial to everyone.”

EO Airmen plan, develop, organize, and direct EO programs and other related activities, advise military and civilian personnel on EO responsibilities and policies and provide information to those seeking assistance. They also conduct briefings, lectures, group discussions, focus groups, and seminars to improve an organization's human relations climate and provide oversight on special interest items as dictated by higher headquarters, for example, sexual harassment reporting, human relations incidents, dissident and protest activities.

"The EO office is a critical piece of the wing staff,” said Col. Christopher Lacouture, 908th Airlift Wing commander. “Having an effective and trusted EO office gives Airmen a means to resolve problems at the lowest level. By working to eliminate discrimination, harassment, and reprisal, they make the unit more ready by helping Airmen perform at their maximum potential.”

Minimum Armed Services Aptitude Battery scores of at least 41 on the Administrative or 44 on the General portions and the ability to routinely lift 40 pounds are requirements for consideration to this AFSC. Completion of college courses in English, social science, psychology, sociology, human resources and behavior, organizational development, and speech are desirable.

If you are interested in a part-time career with full-time benefits as a Reserve Citizen Airman with the 908th Airlift Wing, please contact our Recruiting staff at 334-953-6737.