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Fort Hood leaders host People First Initiative orientation

Fort Hood leaders hosted both local and national organizations to give them an inside look into...
Fort Hood leaders hosted both local and national organizations to give them an inside look into the People First Initiative Thursday.(Alex Gibbs)
Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 8:19 PM CDT
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FORT HOOD, Texas (KWTX) - Fort Hood leaders hosted both local and national organizations to give them an inside look into the People First Initiative Thursday.

The posted hosted groups like local veterans organizations and civilian policy makers to give them a glimpse into the daily lives of all soldiers on post.

“You’re not just a solider, you’re a soldier 24/7,” said former VFW Commander Willie Keller.

“However, it’s important to note that you are an intricate part of this greater Central Texas Community.”

The initiative, sparked by multiple investigations on the installation, sexual harassment claims and the death of Vanessa Guillen.

“It was a tragedy, Keller said.

“It enforced change we should’ve done decades ago.”

More importantly, the groups had a chance to speak with soldiers about how they’re being treated and cared for. While many believe Fort Hood is heading in the right direction, there’s still a long way to go in rebuilding trust with their soldiers.

“Since 2019, a lot of people have looked at Fort Hood as a place where the work-life balance was off,” said Caroline Rose with the New Lines Institute for Policy & Technology.

“The soldiers appeared unhappy and it was a large base with bureaucratic problems. Coming here made me recognize that the leadership is very engaged in solving that problem. It’s gonna take a while, but they’ve already implemented a lot of policies that are effective in addressing these big, structural issues.”

Fort Hood commanders say they plan on continuing tours like this in the future in order to show that the initiative will remain strong.

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