July 13, 2020, 12:25:45 pm

Bullying

Started by 2LTRobbins, December 04, 2019, 05:33:17 pm

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2LTRobbins

Question:  I have a cadet who's dating another cadet in our squadron (they're 14).  Everything has been and is good between them.  No issues with either of their performance or attitude or such.  They're great cadets!

The female cadet's father is the problem.  He wants her to transfer to another squadron as he doesn't like that we aren't "military enough", and we've explained that we are not the military and we follow customs and courtesies of the USAF, but we aren't military.  She has been enjoying our squadron.  Anyway he got mad and is threatening to transfer his daughter to a squadron 50 miles away.  With this, he has told our male cadet that he needs to choose between our squadron and her (which quite frankly is the silliest thing I've heard in a while). 

The father has made comments and said things to others about our group so I see this is a classic case of bullying in the works.  What can I do about him? 


Help!

Holding Pattern

Several things to unpack here.

First, technically the transfer isn't his choice. Your CC can deny the transfer for well and good reasons, this sort of behavior being one of them. Second, it isn't clear if the father is also a SM. That muddies the waters a bit. Third, you probably want to remove your unit identifier from your profile when posting these types of questions as gossip travels at a speed faster than light. Fourth, assuming you aren't the CC, this REALLY needs to be addressed by the squadron commander and deputy commander for cadets. They can sit down with the parents and have a serious conversation to try to get to the root of the problem.

"Not military enough" can mean a lot of things, up to and including being buried in paperwork and not having choice of station.

Eclipse

This is not bullying.

Let her go, if he goes with so be it.



Ned

It is not clear from your post what your position is relative to this situation, which affects what you can and should do here.

It sounds like a parent has indicated that he would like to transfer his cadet to another unit because he does not approve of the dating relationship.  As you probably know, dating between cadets is not necessarily improper.  But can certainly create issues for the cadets involved and/or the unit.  This is a pretty good example of that.

It also sounds like the parent has expressed his displeasure to the other cadet in the relationship, and perhaps to one or more other members of the unit.  But that is not entirely clear.

I think you will find that parents have been expressing displeasure about romantic partners of young teenagers for as long as there have been parents and young teenagers.  I seem to recall several fathers telling me that their daughters could do better.  (Which was undoubtedly true, BTW.)

So far, nothing in your post seems to suggest anything approaching bullying (at least as we define if in CAPR 60-2, but rather a concerned parent saying the kinds of things parents commonly say.  Ultimately parents get to decide a great deal about their child's extra-curricular activities.  Even CAP.  But, of course, no parent should speak disrespectfully to another cadet.

My suggesting is to alert the squadron commander or other responsible seniors of the issue and allow them to deal with it, respecting the rights and roles of all concerned.


At least that's my take based on your description.


Ned Lee
(Father of a former female cadet)

2LTRobbins

Ok, let me clarify a few things.

Parent is NOT a SM.  I am our squadron commander. 

Parent likes the boyfriend, but wants to control him (we are not sure why...haven't figured that out yet).  Parent is disgruntled more that he doesn't have say in squadron activities.  We cancelled a meeting two weeks ago during a winter storm that dumped 9" of snow here and he was livid that we weren't meeting.  Safety first, right?  We've had a couple of squadron activities cancelled due to not enough seniors able to attend (medical issues as of late) and this irritates him.  Truly nothing we can control.

I know the transfer isn't his choice.  And i'm not worried about their romantic situation.  This isn't and hasn't been a problem in our squadron.  Both cadets are good kids.  I just am curious if there is anything I can do about a rogue parent.  Everything in our squadron is pretty smooth sailing.  Our cadets are great.  The seniors are active and help.  It's just one parent that is wanting control or more control.  If he were to apply to be a SM, I'm pretty sure due to his record, Maxwell would deny him due to a checkered past.

Is there anything I can do to keep him from being disrespectful to this cadet?

Eclipse

Quote from: 2LTRobbins on December 04, 2019, 06:41:19 pmI just am curious if there is anything I can do about a rogue parent.


If he's disruptive, you have the right and duty to ask him to leave, and if he won't, you can contact the police and
have him trespassed.

If he simply disagrees with how you run the unit, make your position clear and disengage.  A lot of people lose
arguments in "discussions" or "selling past the close".

Make it clear that he has every right to transfer his daughter, but has no role in how the unit runs, nor should he
be interacting with other cadets during meetings. What he and they do outside the meeting, especially given the relationship,
which, while a bad idea is not prohibited, is outside your control.

As to denying a transfer, unless the cadet is under disciplinary action, you would have no grounds or
authority to deny it because of a problem parent.

Quote from: 2LTRobbins on December 04, 2019, 06:41:19 pm
Is there anything I can do to keep him from being disrespectful to this cadet?


His daughter? No.

The other cadet?  other then the above, if the other cadet's parents are not intervening, then it's certainly
not your place to, unless you believe there is legitimate abuse involved.

These situations are not unusual, and your best bet is to make sure you follow all of CAP's regulations and policies,
enlist higher HQ help if yo feel you need it, but don't make a huge deal about it as these things can becoming unnecessarily
divisive when people try to involve themselves where they don't belong.



Holding Pattern

Quote from: Eclipse on December 04, 2019, 07:01:20 pm


As to denying a transfer, unless the cadet is under disciplinary action, you would have no grounds or
authority to deny it because of a problem parent.



My wing commander had denied transfers from my squadron when I was a squadron commander to another one repeatedly with no grounds whatsoever. I'd say that there are at least more grounds here then there were in those half dozen cases.

PHall

Quote from: Holding Pattern on December 04, 2019, 08:02:58 pm
Quote from: Eclipse on December 04, 2019, 07:01:20 pm


As to denying a transfer, unless the cadet is under disciplinary action, you would have no grounds or
authority to deny it because of a problem parent.



My wing commander had denied transfers from my squadron when I was a squadron commander to another one repeatedly with no grounds whatsoever. I'd say that there are at least more grounds here then there were in those half dozen cases.


If the member transferring still has CAP property issued to them or is transferring to avoid a discipline issue then yeah the transfer can be denied.
And it's not the unit commanders who deny transfers. It's the Wing/Group Commanders. Unit commanders just protest the transfer and the next higher level Commander makes the call. So if you want to protest a transfer make sure you have your facts and such together. Otherwise you get to explain yourself to your boss.

SarDragon

Quote from: Holding Pattern on December 04, 2019, 05:53:20 pm... Third, you probably want to remove your unit identifier from your profile when posting these types of questions as gossip travels at a speed faster than light.



Fixed.
Dave Bowles
Maj, CAP
AT1, USN Retired
50 Year Member
Mitchell Award (unnumbered)
C/WO, CAP, Ret

Holding Pattern

Quote from: PHall on December 04, 2019, 08:53:46 pm
Quote from: Holding Pattern on December 04, 2019, 08:02:58 pm
Quote from: Eclipse on December 04, 2019, 07:01:20 pm


As to denying a transfer, unless the cadet is under disciplinary action, you would have no grounds or
authority to deny it because of a problem parent.



My wing commander had denied transfers from my squadron when I was a squadron commander to another one repeatedly with no grounds whatsoever. I'd say that there are at least more grounds here then there were in those half dozen cases.


If the member transferring still has CAP property issued to them or is transferring to avoid a discipline issue then yeah the transfer can be denied.


Not the case in any of the cases I dealt with.

Quote
And it's not the unit commanders who deny transfers. It's the Wing/Group Commanders. Unit commanders just protest the transfer and the next higher level Commander makes the call. So if you want to protest a transfer make sure you have your facts and such together. Otherwise you get to explain yourself to your boss.


That is completely contrary to CAPR 39-2.

1.11.4. Transfer Procedures:
1.11.4.1. When a member transfers to another unit, the gaining unit will normally initiate
the transfer through the online transfer application. Once the gaining commander has approved
the transfer action the member's record will immediately be updated to reflect the new unit of
assignment. A notification of the transfer action will then appear in the losing unit commander's
online Commanders Corner. If there is any reason why the transfer is not acceptable to the losing
unit, the commander may simply deny the transfer.
Losing commanders must deny the transfer
action within two months of the notification.

There is no provision for higher echelons in there whatsoever.

Which brings me back to: The squadron commander has wide latitude on denying transfers.

Eclipse

December 04, 2019, 09:19:02 pm #10 Last Edit: December 04, 2019, 09:23:16 pm by Eclipse
If a unit CC denies a transfer, from either side, then it does, in fact, go to the next echelon.

"1.11.1. A member who moves from one locality to another may transfer to another unit in
the new community. A member may also transfer from one unit to another in the same locality
upon approval of the unit commanders concerned. If approved by one, but disapproved by the
other, the request will be forwarded to the commander at the next higher echelon for decision.

If disapproved by both unit commanders, the transfer will be denied. "


However if both CC's approve of the transfer, the Wing CC has no authority to deny it, and
this would be an easily sustainable complaint.

Which leaves only two options, the members in question didn't' care enough to file with the IG,
or there is more to the story you are not privy to. Wing CC's don't arbitrarily deny transfers.



Eclipse

FWIW, CAP has no authority to discipline a member, especially a cadet, for the actions of a non-member, parent or otherwise.
It can only discipline members based on their own conduct.

Granted, there are practical realities to a cadet's continued participation if you have a parent trespassed because they
won't knock it off, but that is a tangential issue to the actual member's status.



Holding Pattern

Quote from: Eclipse on December 04, 2019, 09:19:02 pm
If a unit CC denies a transfer, from either side, then it does, in fact, go to the next echelon.

"1.11.1. A member who moves from one locality to another may transfer to another unit in
the new community. A member may also transfer from one unit to another in the same locality
upon approval of the unit commanders concerned. If approved by one, but disapproved by the
other, the request will be forwarded to the commander at the next higher echelon for decision.

If disapproved by both unit commanders, the transfer will be denied. "


However if both CC's approve of the transfer, the Wing CC has no authority to deny it, and
this would be an easily sustainable complaint.

Which leaves only two options, the members in question didn't' care enough to file with the IG,
or there is more to the story you are not privy to. Wing CC's don't arbitrarily deny transfers.



I can't speak to the actions of the members after the fact. I can tell you what I witnessed as the losing commander who approved each transfer, as did the winning commander.

Al Sayre

You indicated that he has a hard spot about "not being military enough", and that he didn't like meetings being cancelled for safety ( snow) or cadet protection concerns (not enough seniors).  Assuming that the cadets and parents were notified of the meeting cancellations in a timely manner so they didn't drive 30 miles just to find out the meeting was cancelled.  You might print out some of our safety, cadet protection, and cadet program materials and regulations and give them to him in a non-confrontational manner to explain why the actions were taken.  Since he's not a member, he obviously isn't aware of our processes and regulations.  Sometimes giving them our operating regulations in black and white can help correct these misunderstandings.  I had to do that a few times when I was a SQ/CC.  Hope this helps.
Lt Col Al Sayre
MS Wing Staff Dude
Admiral, Great Navy of the State of Nebraska
GRW #2787

Fester

First, if the daughter's father is being disrespectful to the male cadet, you need to inform him that is unacceptable and that it will NOT be tolerated.  If he's incapable of following your guidance, deny him the right to attend meetings. 

Second, all of this arguing about the possible transfer is ridiculous.  If the father wants his daughter to transfer to another unit, that is between he and her.  If someone tries to intervene to stop that possible transfer, I find it highly likely that he will just pull her from CAP altogether. 
1stLt, CAP
Squadron CC
Group CPO
Eaker - 1996

TheSkyHornet

Quote from: Fester on December 05, 2019, 06:56:00 am
If the father wants his daughter to transfer to another unit, that is between he and her.  If someone tries to intervene to stop that possible transfer, I find it highly likely that he will just pull her from CAP altogether.


That's how I see this playing out.

"Is there somewhere else we can go?"
"No."
"Okay, then. Bye."


I had a case of a parent who was mad that we did fundraising to avoid our cadets having added costs to activities. She felt like her kids were being handed something that they didn't earn themselves. I said that, first off, we're not an activity club; this is a leadership program. Secondly, we're not in the business to raise funds; that's a symptom of the fact that we have costs associated with our training. I prefer that cadets focus more on participation at activities than worrying about how they're going to pay to participate. She literally pulled her son and daughter out of the program. "I didn't raise my kids to take handouts." -- Okay. Bye. Their loss.

So I can see where someone says "You're not x-enough." We can have a professional, civil discussion about how they feel. Before rejecting anyone, consider why they feel that way, and see if they if they have any positive points that you can pick up from the conversation. But if they just don't get it, then maybe transferring is best to seek a different experience at another unit, or leave the organization altogether.

As for the cadet-on-cadet relationship, that's a private matter that I don't think you need to get involved in with the sole exception of having a conversation with the male cadet and explaining that he has choices. Discuss with him his progress, and how he intends to continue to progress, and explain that sometimes life can get in the way and present options. But he needs to make his own decisions. If he wants to transfer to stay in a relationship, don't get in the way of that. Understand guidance versus directive in this case. Our job is not to meddle in the personal lives of our cadets unless there is a safety concern or welfare problem. Tread very carefully on that.

Is this really a battle you want to wage?

Luis R. Ramos

I may be missing something here, but I keep reading on this thread where some members are giving the OP advice on handling the relationship between the female and male cadets.

However I DO NOT SEE THE OP IS ASKING ADVICE on the cadet's relationship with each other!   

AND I do not see him stating HE WILL MEDDLE in their relationship!

Are these members reading more in the OP message than he intended? Or are THEY reading the OP will meddle?

Why can't those members stay true to the message as posted by the OP?
Squadron Safety Officer
Squadron Communication Officer
Squadron Emergency Services Officer

Eclipse

As posted, the relationship would appear to be inextricably intertwined with ongoing CAP participation,
at least in as much as the OP indicates the parent has given the male cadet an ultimatum.

After a re-read, probably the best first step is a sit-down between the adult leadership and the parents of
both cadets, in the same room, without the cadets present.

Layout the reality of CAP membership, and have the CC suggest the best course from a CAP perspective.

From there let the chips fall where they may.



TheSkyHornet

Quote from: Eclipse on December 05, 2019, 09:40:04 pm
As posted, the relationship would appear to be inextricably intertwined with ongoing CAP participation,
at least in as much as the OP indicates the parent has given the male cadet an ultimatum.


That's my take on it.

1.) The cadet's father has issues with the way the unit conducts itself. This warrants a discussion about the manner in which CAP is intended to operate. If the father still wants to transfer his daughter, then that's his right. I wouldn't deny that.

2.) Two cadets are dating. Unless it seems like it's becoming an issue, I'd stay out of it. If it seems like it's starting to become an issue (regarding the cadets' participation within CAP), then pull them aside and discuss ways to make it work in a professional environment. You can't deny them from dating.

3.) A cadet's father is discussing personal matters with another cadet. Maybe mention the appropriateness of that conversation regarding CAP involvement, but that's really going to end up way beyond the bounds of the squadron's control. The cadet has the right to say "I want to transfer because reasons." I wouldn't deny that. The cadet may also say "I don't want to transfer; this isn't fair." The relationship aspect is between that cadet and the other cadet. The CAP membership aspect is between that cadet and his parents.

Quote
From there let the chips fall where they may.


Pretty much the extent that you'll have control over in this situation.


I'm hesitant to call this bullying. Is that really what's going on? What conversations occurred behind the scenes away from the meeting between these individuals?