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Ethical Stand-Down In Works For Marines

Aired 5/11/12 on KPBS News.

Marine Corps Commander General James Amos is taking steps to address a rash of embarrassing incidents that threaten to tarnish the Marines. A new Marine Corps training course will culminate in an “Ethical Stand Down.”

Marine Corps Commander General James Amos is calling for every member of the Marines to take a newly developed training course in ethical behavior and decision making.

The move comes after an accumulation of news, ranging from Marines urinating on the bodies of fallen enemies to Haditha where 24 civilians were killed to a Marine posting negative comments about the president on Facebook to mounting reports of sexual abuse within the Marines.

Major Michael Armistead of the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego said the idea is new, but what is clear is that the Marine Corps University in Virginia is developing a one day curriculum on ethical leadership.

“Right now what we do know is there will be a 'train the trainers' period of instruction for senior leaders here at the Depot and throughout the West Coast in June,“ he said. “Then at some point there will be an 'Ethical Stand Down' across the Marine Corps for the commanders to address ethical behaviors with their Marines.”

The “Train the Trainers“ course will be a one-day course at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot on June 22. Training for senior leaders on Camp Pendleton will take place between June 18 and 20.

According to a Marine Corps memo, the one-day course will train leaders to teach their Marines about ethical decision making and provide a catalyst for ongoing discussion and debate.

Armistead said no date has been set yet for the day long Marine Corps-wide Stand Down.

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