The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Human Goals Charter signed on April 28, is now being disseminated widely among the disparate commands that make up the DoD. The charter serves as cornerstone document in the governance of the DoD’s treatment of people and as a guide for the DoD’s diversity and equity programs.
Notable in this year’s charter is that it marks the first time that sexual orientation is listed as a protected class alongside race, color, sex, religion or national origin.
The 2014 Human Goals Charter establishes 10 goals, two which are aimed at making the military and civilians services of the DoD a model of equal opportunity for all. Notable in this year’s charter is that it marks the first time that sexual orientation is listed as a protected class alongside race, color, sex, religion or national origin.
At the April 28 ceremony at the Pentagon, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, a signatory, noted the change in language. “I’m proud that the language of the charter has been updated to reflect the contributions of gay and lesbian military personnel who now serve openly and proudly across America’s armed forces,” Hagel said. “We will continue striving to make military service a model of equal opportunity for all regardless of race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation or national origin.”
Among some of the notable goals:
- To make military service in the Department of Defense a model of equal opportunity for all regardless of race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or national orgin;
- To provide equity in civilian employment regardless of race, color, sex, religion, national orgin, disability, age, sexual orientation, or genetic information, without reprisal and to provide and environment that is accessible to and usable by all;
- To hold those who do business with or receive assistance from the Department to full compliance with its equal opportunity policies;
- To create an inclusive environment that values diversity and fosters mutual respect and cooperation among all person;
- To foster a cultue that treats all individuals as full and equal partners on the National Defense team, and encourages the fullest utilization of their skills constant with DoD policy.
Besides Hagel, signatories include high-ranking civilian and military leaders from throughout the DoD. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, Secretary of the Army John McHugh, Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III, Secretary of the Air Force Deborah James, and Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Jim Amos are notable signatories.
“The DoD human goals charter we are resigning today affirms that noble American conviction,” Dempsey said at the signing ceremony. “The virtues we celebrate today are the very fabric of our profession of arms. The quality, dignity and respect comprise the cloth of our culture.”
“The virtues we celebrate today are the very fabric of our profession of arms. The quality, dignity and respect comprise the cloth of our culture.”
A May 20 internal memorandum from Jessica Wright, the acting Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, urges that the charter be disseminated widely and requests that organizations print and prominently post the charter throughout DoD workplaces.