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Marines attending resident PME to be screened for tattoos

The Corps has revised its checklist for Marines attending resident professional military education courses to include scrutiny of tattoos to make sure they're within the service's regulations.

Among a handful of changes to the checklist for Marines preparing to attend one of the staff noncommissioned officer academies is a new block to ensure that "all tattoos that are visible to the eye when wearing standard physical training gear are documented in the Marine's [official military personnel file]."

While the Corps' tattoo policy has not changed with the new checklist, it places Marines under additional inspection, making it more likely that out-of-regulation tattoos — or those not appropriately documented — are flagged.

"Prior to attendance to a Staff Noncommissioned Officer Academy course, Marines shall be screened by their command in order to ensure all prerequisite conditions are met," reads Marine administrative message 575/14, signed Nov. 5.

The first Marines to be impacted by the new policy are those planning to attend a resident course that begins Jan. 5.

The service tightened its tattoo regulations in January 2010. The measure was meant to codify the service's policy to remove uneven enforcement of what was considered appropriate. It also aimed to crack down on tattoos that limited Marines' world-wide assignability, or detracted from a clean military appearance.

Tattoos visible in physical training uniforms have to be documented and meet a series of criteria on size. Visible tattoos must be no larger than the Marine's hand with fingers extended and together and the thumb touching the base of the index finger. Additionally, they must abide by rules on offensive content.

Not meeting the requisite requirements — including tattoo regulations — could prevent enlisted Marines from attending a staff NCO academy, which conducts the resident PME. Depending on the base, staff NCO academies hold courses for corporals or sergeants and above.

With an ever-increasing emphasis on the importance of resident PME and extreme competition to remain in uniform through the manpower drawdown, not clearing a resident PME requirement could become a career stumbling block when going before selection boards for promotion. In October, the Marine Corps announced that corporals through staff sergeants would be required to complete a resident PME course in order to be eligible for promotion to the next rank, starting in October 2015.

Aside from tattoo screenings, other changes to the checklist for resident PME at staff NCO academies include the of Electronic Data Interchange Personal Identifiers instead of social security numbers to track Marines and paper work. To help combat identify theft, the Defense Department launched the Social Security Number Reduction Program in 2010 which prodded the services to identify all areas where they could use alternative identifiers. The Marine Corps subsequently carried out efforts to minimize the use of social security numbers.

Additionally, the new checklist removed the requirement "to certify capability of handling live ammunition and firearms." It was not immediately clear why the change was made.

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  • "- RCSP as a PME requirement is rescinded. RCSP is now an incentivized PME opportunity, not a requirement."  Although this may change with a new MARADMIN. - From MCU

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A message from the Sergeant Major

During these times our basic daily routines have been altered to the extent of not even knowing what is going to happen tomorrow. I would like to thank everyone for doing your part to mitigate the spread of NovelCoronavirus COVID-19. The Marine Corps is also going through changes during this time.
One of the changes is the Professional Military Education schedule. Marine Corps PME is a very important part of the process for Marines interested in being promoted. If they do not complete their PME in a timely manner, they simply will not get promoted. The PME schools that Marines attend are currently closed down due to COVID – 19. Marine Corps Administrative Message or MARADMIN 214/20 explains what the Marines Corps is doing to help Marines that need to complete their PME.
The accelerated online Sergeant’s School seminars will help sergeants complete their PME. These seminars are usually 15 weeks and with this program the seminars will be cut to approximately 8 weeks. Of course, the seminars will still cover everything that the 15-week course would cover. This means that the seminar will meet twice a week to impart all the information that would be given in a 15-week course.
This is a great opportunity for sergeants who should take advantage of this to complete their Professional Military Education requirements. I highly encourage all sergeants that will be on next year’s board to take advantage of this opportunity.
Another change that will affect the Marines on Barstow is MARADMIN 213/20. The Marine Corps will give the opportunity to Marines that are going to End of Active Service or retire, the opportunity to extend in the Corps. This will give the Marine’s that fit into those categories more time to look for employment, go to interviews, and take care of their families. This will give Marines time to effectively and safely transition during this pandemic.
Just a reminder the commissary will open for active duty personal and their families on Tuesdays from 0900 – 0930. This is a great opportunity to get your shopping done in a low-stress environment and ensure that you have access to necessities before anyone else is allowed to enter.
Keep an eye out for upcoming volunteer opportunities which will always be available to you and your families. Your volunteer time helps the base and local community, but you reap rewards from doing volunteer service as well. Volunteer opportunities will be in The Prospector and will also be posted at https://www.mclbbarstow.maarines.mil and on the Base’s official Facebook page @MCLBBarstow.

Semper Fi,
SgtMaj Kretschmer

Date Taken:04.23.2020
Date Posted:04.23.2020 14:15
Story ID:368274
Location:MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE BARSTOW, CA, US 

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