Home : Resources : Equal Opportunity

Equal Opportunity

COMSUBPAC Force Command Climate Specialist
Senior Chief Andrew Fillebrown
(808) 473-1260

Equal Opportunity (EO) is a fundamental element of the Navy’s core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment. The Navy Regulations regarding Equal Opportunity (Article 1164), reads "Equal Opportunity shall be afforded to all on the basis of individual efforts, performance, conduct, diligence, potential, capabilities and talents without discrimination of race, sex, religion, color, national origin, or sexual orientation. Naval personnel shall demonstrate a strong commitment to stand on these principles and carry them out."

EO enables Sailors to honor and support Navy core values, accept responsibility for their actions, and to expect others to do the same. EO keeps the mission of the Navy first and allows all to be proud to be in the service of our country.

EO empowers Sailors to respond appropriately, even when faced with increasingly difficult choices. EO promotes and develops unit cohesion and partnerships up, down, and across organizational lines in order to meet the challenges of today and the future. EO recognizes the whole Sailor and the responsibility that the chain of command has to care for them.

COMSUBPAC Command Policy Statements

Informal Complaint / Grievance Procedures

The Informal Resolution System (IRS) assists Sailors in resolving conflicts, and when successful, the IRS is the timeliest method for resolving conflict, because it deals directly with the individuals involved and uses the immediate chain of command.  Sometimes it is ineffective or simply is not a desirable method for resolution.  In these cases the Sailor should file a formal complaint.  These are the steps in the IRS:

  1. Address the issue with the person.
  2. If the behavior continues or it is not an advisable solution to confront the individual, bring the situation to the attention of your chain of command.
  3. Request mast with your commanding officer.

Formal Complaint Procedures

There are three ways to file a formal complaint:

  1. Navy Equal Opportunity Formal Complaint Form (NAVPERS 5354/2 (Rev  08-2017)
    Used to process EO/SH complaints within a command where the Commanding Officer is authorized to provide the requested remedy (redress). The EO/SH form provides timelines and outlines detailed procedures for grievance resolution.  The EO/SH complaint form is divided into four parts:
    1. Part 1- complainant's written sworn statement and requested remedy.
    2. Part 2 - complainant's list of advocates
    3. Part 3 - guidance for the commanding officer.
    4. Part 4 - command feedback to the complainant and notification of the avenue to appeal.
  2. NAVREGS Article 1150, Redress of Wrong Committed by a Superior
    If a member has a complaint against a superior and does not wish to use the EO/SH complaint form, they may file a complaint under NAVREGS article 1150, Redress of Wrong Committed by a Superior. To file a complaint under NAVREGS article 1150, the individual should obtain counsel with a lawyer at a local Naval Legal Services Office (NLSO).
  3. UCMJ Article 138, Complaint of Wrongs against the Commanding Officer

If the resolution from the complaint under NAVREGS Article 1150 is considered unjust by the complainant, or if the grievance is against the Commanding Officer, an individual may submit a complaint against the Commanding Officer under UCMJ Article 138.

As with the NAVREGS Article 1150, the UCMJ Article 138 "Complaints of Wrongs Against  the Commanding Officer " should be prepared with legal assistance and submitted via the General Court Martial Convening Authority (GCMA) over the accused Commanding Officer.

Navy Inspector General

Any member who is not able to receive resolution for their grievance may contact the Navy Inspector General (IG) hotline at (800) 522-3451. The member may use this hotline to file a complaint.

Communication with Elected Officials

All sailors are advised of their right to contact their elected official at any time. Communication with a Congressman or Senator is considered "protected communication," and as such is afforded specific rights upheld by the Navy legal system and Inspector General.

Command Climate Assessment Process

  1. Both Active and Reserve Commanders, Commanding Officers and Officers-in-Charge (hereafter referred to as Commanders) shall complete a command climate assessment within 90 days after assumption of command and every 9-12 months as follow-up assessments during their command tenure.
    Note:  Personnel assigned to Reserve augment units (units not listed on the Standard Navy Distribution List) will be surveyed by their cognizant supported command.
  2. The following are exceptions to the Under Secretary of Defense Memorandum, Command Climate Assessments dated 25 July 2013, on the conduct of command climate assessments for units of fewer than 50 personnel or with fewer than 16 personnel or 16 respondents:
    1. Each unit, regardless of size, is required to complete a command climate assessment.
    2. Units with fewer than 16 personnel or 16 respondents on the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI) Organizational Climate Survey (DEOCS) shall conduct a command climate assessment via focus groups, interviews, observations and reviewing command records and reports. 
  3. The command climate assessment shall be completed using the DEOCS, focus groups, interviews, observations and reviewing command records and reports.  The command climate assessment shall not take longer than 60 days, 110 days for Navy Operational Support Centers (NOSCs), from the start of the DEOCS to the Commander’s debrief of the command.  An example of a command climate assessment timeline is outlined below:
    1. DEOCS:  21 days; One drill cycle for Navy Reserve Augmented Units.
      Note:  When a DEOCS is requested a user name, password and URL are provided to the survey administrator.  When the command closes out the survey the administrator must specifically request that the report be generated.
    2. Request/receive report from DEOMI:  7 days.
    3. Command Assessment Team (CAT) review of the report:  10 days; 25 days Navy Reserve Augmented Units.
    4. Conduct focus groups/interviews:  10 days; 30 days for Navy Reserve Augmented Units.
    5. Preparation of the executive summary and plan of action and milestones (POA&M):  7 days; 10 days for Navy Reserve Augmented Units.
    6. Commanders shall debrief their commands no later than 5 days after receipt of the executive summary from the CAT.
  4. Records and reports shall be maintained and reviewed quarterly.
  5. Any deviation from these procedures shall be approved, in writing, by the Echelon II Commander via the Echelon II Command Climate Specialist (CCS) or Equal Opportunity program manager.
  6. Command Climate Specialist and/or Command Managed Equal Opportunity program managers shall track and provide oversight of the command climate assessment process for subordinate commands.
  7. Commands outside the continental United States with local foreign national employees can request an extension, to be granted by their Echelon II Commander, to allow for survey question and response translation.

Climate Assessment Tools

  1. The DEOCS is available from the research department of DEOMI through the DEOCS website.
  2. The DEOCS Assessment to Solutions website is designed to support leaders and equal opportunity professionals by providing tools and products designed to address the mission-impacting issues that were identified during the climate assessment process. 

Enhanced Commander Accountability

  1. Commanders shall conduct a face-to-face debrief of their command climate assessment executive summary, using the DEOCS to include a POA&M, with their Immediate Superior-in-Command (ISIC).  Video Teleconference (VTC) is an acceptable method for Commanders not located in the same geographic region as their ISIC.  The ISIC can authorize the use of Defense Collaboration Services or teleconferences for commands without VTC capability.  Commanders shall provide their ISIC with a face-to-face debrief at the first opportunity either in person or VTC.  This process will provide the ISIC an opportunity to mentor the Commander and shall happen within 60 days of completion of the command climate assessment, unless otherwise approved by the Echelon II Commander.  The POA&M and executive summary shall be forwarded to the ISIC no later than 30 days after completion of the command climate assessment.
  2. Commanders shall include the ISIC Commander contact information in their initial DEOCS request to enable automatic ISIC visibility of the command climate survey process.  Commanders shall also validate the ISIC contact information when closing the DEOCS and requesting the DEOCS report to enable the ISIC to receive automatic notification and directly access the DEOCS results and report.
  3. The Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) has directed that Echelon II Commanders list the Vice Chief of Naval Operations or the Director, Navy Staff (whichever is applicable) rather than the CNO as their ISIC.
  4. ISICs at each level shall issue guidance to their respective Commanders on scheduling the face-to-face debriefs and provide the ISIC contact information for ordering the DEOCS.
  5. Debriefs shall cover significant findings, areas of strength, areas of concern, an explanation of the validation process, actions taken, and plans developed to improve command climate.  Brief format will be determined by the Echelon II Commander.