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Inspire Change. Impact Tomorrow. Be a Wingman.

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The term Wingman stems from a time-honored tradition within our Air Force flying community that says a Wingman will always stay with and protect the lead pilot, watching his or her back.  It's a promise, a pledge, a commitment between Airmen.  We are all Airmen—every Air Force Civilian, Officer and Enlisted member is an Airman and plays a role in our success as a community.

At the foundation of the “Culture of Airmen” are our core values – integrity first, service before self, and excellence in all we do. We accomplish our mission as a dedicated team committed to our core values and to each other. Success rests with Airmen engaging with other Airmen in a way that fosters communication and connection. Practicing being a good Wingman needs to happen daily.

 

 

Resilience Videos

Maj. Gen. Carl Schaefer, Air Force Materiel Command Deputy Commander, addresses a culture of taking care of one another, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, Aug. 29, 2019. The Wingman Intervention Program promotes helping Airmen in and out of uniform when personal issues arise. (U.S. Air Force video by Christopher Decker)
This is the 3rd video of a 6 part PSA Campaign featuring Air Force Helping Agencies. Celebrity chef Robert Irvine helps Stephen Herrera through the "One Stop Shop" of resources provided by the Air Force Employee Assistance Program, or "EAP." The Air Force Employee Assistance Program provides free information, counseling, resource identification, problem solving, coaching, consultation and support to Military and Civilian Air Force Employees and their families. EAP is designed to help with any concern or issue and is available to all Air Force Civilian workforce and their families 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
"I've Got This" communicates the importance of seeking out help when in need, encouraging airmen not to take on difficult situations alone. This is the 2nd video of a 6 part PSA Campaign featuring Air Force Helping Agencies. Starring "Diesel" Dave Kiley from Discovery Channel's Diesel Brothers, and social media influencer Jared Shaw. The friends are shown in a series of events where Dave repeatedly refuses Jared's help. In the end, Dave finds himself in a situation where he needs help and a Wingman is there to provide aid.
The Air Force Office of Integrated Resilience recently unveiled a new website (https://www.resilience.af.mil) that highlights tools to help Airmen and their families thrive, and provide a culture of dignity and respect across the Total Force. These tools, including prevention, intervention and postvention lines of effort, aim to confront the challenges of sexual assault and suicide head-on, thereby developing a more resilient force.
"The Big Picture," communicates information about the agencies available on base that are provided to help Airmen with various circumstances.

Senior Leader Perspectives

CSAF Goldfein"Together, you keep the hope, and you’ve walked in each other’s shoes. You are united by an important cause – providing care, support, and friendship by lending your ear, your heart, your mind and your time to one another.”

-- Gen. David L. Goldfein, Chief of Staff, U.S. Air Force

Wingman Concepts

What is a bystander?

Bystanders are individuals who witness potentially high-risk situations and by their presence, may have the opportunity to help stop a negative behavior.

Empowered or pro-social bystanders are individuals who make a choice to intervene to prevent or interrupt these potentially dangerous situations, and confront inappropriate behaviors.

What is the connection between Wingmen and bystanders?

Most problematic behaviors involve bystanders. Airmen are encountering situations where intervening to protect their Wingmen would be appropriate including, among other things, alcohol abuse, hazing or bullying, suicide ideation, safety mishaps, sexual assault, and equal opportunity treatment incidents. In most instances a problem could have been avoided with intervention. The Air Force has been providing Airmen the skills to identify early warning signs of problematic behaviors and intervene in a way that is realistic for them. The bottom line is, “True Wingmen look out for the welfare of their peers and community.”

What training is available to teach Wingmen positive bystander intervention skills?

We know most Airmen want to voluntarily do the right thing.  The most important thing is to make sure they have tools that are actionable within the reality of their daily lives.

Foundational Bystander Intervention training is provided to all new incoming Airmen at their accession source or first duty assignment. On-going training is provided for the Total Force on an annual basis. 

The intent of the training is to create an environment of dignity, respect, and connectedness throughout the Air Force and equip bystanders with connection, knowledge and skills to increase protective and reactive bystander behaviors.  Proactive behaviors set cultural norms that negative behaviors will not be tolerated.  

The goals of Bystander Intervention training are to raise awareness of proactive behaviors using the 3 D’s (Direct, Delegate, Distract); to increase the motivation to help develop skills and confidence to intervene and assist when necessary; and ensure the safety and well-being of self and others.

Direct, Delegate, Distract:

  • Direct:  You are directly interacting with the people involved in the situation and letting them know that you are concerned.  It may be a confrontation, “Hey, what are you doing?"  Or it may just be checking in with the person who might be in harm’s way, “Are you okay?”
  • Delegate:  When you recognize a potentially high-risk situation and you may be uncomfortable saying something yourself; pull in someone else to assist (e.g. security, commander, chaplain, a friend).
  • Distract:  If you see a situation and can think of a way to divert the attention of the people in the situation, distracting is the perfect option.

 

Nominate

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Do you have a Wingman Intervention story to share? 

Have you witnessed your fellow military or civilian Airmen take action to protect their Wingman either at work or off-duty?

Let us know!

Complete the Wingman Intervention Submission Form, and email it to the Violence Prevention Integrator for your installation. 

In an effort to highlight the positive actions of our Wingmen, stories will be shared across the command as great examples of how one small act can make a huge difference.

Defining Success

Success rests with Airmen engaging with other Airmen in a way that fosters communication and connection.  Practicing being a good Wingman needs to be a daily occurrence. 

A good Wingman:

-- Gets involved,  i.e. knows their fellow Airmen

-- Is alert for signs of danger from whatever source

-- Takes action when necessary to protect their Wingman, both on and off duty

How you can help:

  • Step up and act
    • It only takes one person to step up and help in a situation
    • Be the leader
  • Intervention
    • When you see a potentially dangerous situation, safely intervene on the behalf of the potential victim