Leadership, managing competing commitments and self-care issues top the challenges the Air Force community faces, according to a newly released RAND Corporation study. At the service’s request, RAND conducted a survey of airmen, retirees and their families between August and October 2017.
Respondents indicated they are hindered from performing normal activities for roughly two to three days a month because of “poor mental or physical health.”
Other findings include:
* Many expressed a need for more information and emotional or social support.
* Some 58 percent of all Air Force personnel who tried to get help for issues found that their needs went unmet.
* Military mental health providers and “religious or spiritual providers” proved to be the best resources for providing help.
* Other military resources were found lacking in the way they addressed problems with military life and family situations.
The report recommended that the Air Force:
* Address problems associated with military practices, culture, well-being and work-life balance.
* Take steps to improve conditions for units with heavy workloads.
* Address sleep-related challenges and stress management.
* Reach out to airmen and spouses – particularly those who serve in the Reserve and National Guard – with information about services and programs. This would include having announcements sent to personal email addresses.
* Make efforts to understand the ramifications of the perceptions of poor leadership.