A US base in Germany is investigating a claim that a security forces airman offered a bribe to take a physical fitness test

Members of the 86th Security Forces Squadron run at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, April 20, 2022. Base officials are investigating allegations made on social media accusing a security forces airman of offering a bribe to pass a physical training test. ((Trevor Rhynes/US Air Force))

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — Executives at Ramstein Air Base are investigating allegations that an airman tried to bribe officials to issue a passing grade on an annual physical fitness test.

A spokesman for the 86th Airlift Wing acknowledged in an email to the Stars and Stripes on Tuesday that an investigation was ongoing but declined to give details while it was active.

Last week, social media users who said they were affiliated with the 86th Security Forces Squadron at Ramstein Air Force Base anonymously alleged a cover-up of the undisclosed identity. disciplinary offense and described the drop in morale within the ranks of the military police unit.

“An 86th SFS SNCO here in Ramstein got caught bribing the tester to change the point numbers so he met standards and didn’t fail,” a commenter on popular Facebook page Amn said. /NCO/SNCO.

Members of the unit are responsible for security at one of the Department of Defense’s largest overseas installations and one of the Air Force’s busiest airlift hubs.

Corruption is punishable by court martial under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

The anonymous commentator wrote on the Amn/NCO/SNCO Facebook page that following the incident, the unit’s physical training was significantly increased, placing an additional burden on the already overworked Airmen.

“Instead of punishing the individual and holding them accountable, Airmen are now required to attend more pts so no one else is in the same situation to fail, the commentator said.

Another post on the Facebook page shared an official memorandum outlining the physical training program for unit operations and flight training.

The July 27 memo establishes physical training three times a week for all members who score less than 95% on recurring squadron-internal fitness tests. Those who get the 95% score should lead one session per week, according to the memo.

A base spokesperson on Tuesday confirmed the memo’s authenticity and said the policy was among several initiatives designed to ensure physical endurance and combat readiness requirements are met. The spokesperson added that fitness programs are “constantly evaluated.”

Another commentator identifying himself as a member of the 86th Security Forces Squadron said the increased physical training load has lengthened working hours, keeping security forces members on the job from 4:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. hours on certain shifts.

“(I don’t care) who you are, it’s been long days,” the anonymous commenter said. “It’s hard to convince Airman to stay in (the security forces) when they have friends of equal rank in other career fields working half the time and earning the same money.”

While security forces units are known for their demanding duty schedules that require them to fill mission-critical security positions around the clock, the wing said there was no demand. overall excessive hours.

“There is no requirement for 86 SFS Airmen to stay on the job for a 17.5 hour day,” a spokesperson wrote in an email. Unit leaders “maximize schedule flexibility and ensure our Airmen are not working unnecessary hours,” the email said.

The last annual unit morale and climate survey was an online survey last summer during Operation Allied Refuge, when security airmen worked long hours to help house thousands of Afghan refugees. after the US-backed government in Kabul fell to the Taliban.

The comments reflected “the increased operational tempo of this specific period,” a Wing spokesperson wrote in an email Tuesday.

“Unit leadership and the Security Forces Career Area continue to seek improvements in the quality of life for our defenders and their families,” the emailed statement read.

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