Navy spouses assail sailor cuts


Navy spouses upset with the latest round of sailor cuts are going on the offensive with a new video released Monday. The 5-minute-long video challenges the Navy’s rationale for sending home 2,947 sailors next year and urges viewers to sign a petition started a day before.

The video quotes Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jon Greenert, who has written that the board considered performance in making their selections, then asks: “Why are sailors with [driving under the influence citations]allowed to stay, while other sailors with clean records are being let go?”

The video — uploaded by self-described Navy spouse Bobbi Taylor — doesn’t provide any examples of this, but goes on to quote Navy spouses who have been affected by the cuts, set to a dramatic soundtrack.

“I’m trying to stay positive about this whole thing but part of me is still really angry,” a Navy spouse is quoted as saying. “And I think we all deserve to be. Fifteen years of service and no ‘I’m sorry,’ just an ‘Alright, we don[‘]t need you and will help give you info on getting a job as a civilian.’ ”

The ERB cuts affect sailors from E-4 to E-8, some of whom had up to 15 years of experience and were likely planning to retire after 20 years. The video attests to this fact, quoting multiple spouses of career sailors.

“When he separates,” one Navy wife is quoted as saying, “he’ll only have needed four years and two months until retirement.”

The video urges viewers to sign an online petition. If the petition receives 25,000 signatures by Jan. 17, it will prompt the White House to review the cuts.

Organizers have also launched a Facebook page: Sailors against ERB.


About Author


  1. ok, only the worst sailors are being kicked out. who are these so-called excellent sailors? so much ado about nothing. the navy is kicking out the low performers. maybe if they worked on their careers early, they would still be in. jeeeesh.

    same thng with the e7 to e9 fialures. the worst are being kicked out and the best are being kept. it’s that simple.

  2. Dear “Johnson”
    Would you say the same to my neighbor who served back to back tours in Afghanistan, earned not one, but two bronze stars? Or perhaps to the sailors who were once Med boarded that are included in this? I highly doubt it.

    I don’t even think this is about getting rid of whatever kind of sailor. It’s about giving these sailors what they’ve earned. There are men and women who have served 15+ years who are being denied their retirement. Think it’s a coincidence that all sailors not selected by ERB must be discharged by September 1, 2012? Of course not. Because on October 1, 2012, sailors may opt to retire at 15 years of service.
    Many of these sailors were not even told their records were being reviewed by the ERB board. They never had their chance to write their letters to the board. Some of them, were told not to submit a conversion packet by their NCC because they were approved for PTS. Thus when they went to crossrate sailors, there was nothing stating they would crossrate, which many of them would surely do so!

  3. mc1997, it seems as though you do not have an understanding of the military life. I am a proud to be a Navy spouse. Over the last 9 years, I have supported my husband as he has served our country to keep us (including you) safe. I have, as well as thousands of other wives have worked full time or part time jobs to help provide for our families.

    Please understand, that we are not fighting for “freebies”, we are trying to prevent a mistake from happening. The ERB was to downsize and eliminate sailors that were “under performing in their rate/rank”. To those, such as mc1997 that may not know, a sailor must remain in their rank for a period of time before they are eligible to take the advancement test. My husband is a first class. He would have been up for his first shot at Chief in March 2012. Due to him being selected for the ERB, he is now not permitted to even try.

    It is mass confusion to understand why sailors that have been approved for PTS and re-enlistment are suddenly being separated. The ERB was obviously a work in progress, so why approve sailors, only to yank it right back less than a year later?

    As a civilian, you more than likely do not have to “reapply” for your job. These men and women have stood watch for 24 hours at a time, slept in tents on the dirt in 120+ degree weather, and spent numerious hours dedicated to the Navy, only to be told that it still isn’t enough. Next time you are punching that time clock after overtime, or thinking about the time and a half for holidays, remember the thousands of men and women who have worked overtime for the past 9 months, only to get the same pay twice a month.

  4. @mc1997 I may be fat…you got me there. But really, is the name calling really efficient? I actually have TWO paying jobs. Perhaps you should get your facts straight?
    @navytimes I’ve removed my video because you’ve never asked me for permission to use it. I also don’t appreciate linking my twitter without permission, or using parts of my video in print. If you’d like to use any of my work, then feel free to ASK.

  5. “….said she was surprised and angered the Navy would kick out her husband, who she said had a spotless record and had been the top AT at his command last year.

    “We had heard about the ERB board earlier in the year,” ……said. “Everybody had told him, ‘Hey, you’re fine. Don’t worry about it. They’re trying to get rid of the riffraff, the people with the [driving under the influence citations] and everything.’ So we weren’t really concerned about it, because it wasn’t supposed to be for people with clean records.” Welll, guess it is..huge slap in the face by the Navy to men and women who were proud to serve.

  6. It seems as though a few of you have a misunderstanding of the Navy life. I have proudly stood beside my sailor for 10 years as he has served in the United States Navy since 1998 (before we met). Of his 13+ years he has done back to back sea duty, deploying to Iraq, Afghanistan, Africa, and Japan just to name a few. He is not the only sailor that has done so, just as I am not the only wife that works full time, goes to school full time, and raises our children full time. For you to say we are lazy freeloaders is a bit of a false statement.

    The ERB was to downsize certain rates that were overmanned. The results have left many of us in mass confusion. If they noticed the need for downsizing, why were so many of these sailors being approved for reenlistment and/or PTS? My husband had been approved for both in 2011, so why was he selected to go? According to the criteria, sailors that were “stuck” in their rate and rank were to be separated. What many civilians may not know is that sailors are required to serve in their rank for a period of time before they are permitted to advance. In our case, my husband would going up for Chief Boards in March 2012. As a result of the ERB, he is not permitted to try to advance.

    The sailors that were selected to stay in the Navy may or may not be the best, but as a spouse, I am not here to judge people I don’t know, just as I feel the board made their decisions on lack of knowledge. If you are going to tell someone they are not performing at the top level, you should know them, know their ability, and know their passion for what they do.

    I want civilians to remember the last time they had to reapply for their job, or the last time they slept in a tent in the middle of a dessert with a gun strapped to you at all times because at any moment you could be under attack. These men and women have given so much to be told, “sorry you were not selected to stay”, with no explanation.

    As we begin the new year, we face reality of what 2012 will bring. For my family, it means the loss of my husbands career, possibly losing out house and my job because we will no longer be able to afford our mortgage, and a mile long list of what ifs.

    If you feel that spouses are overreacting, live on the street for a few days just to get a taste of what 2,947 families are faced with this year.

  7. all u sailors and spouses who feel wronged, do this: post your evals (the last 5 regular evals, not transfer evals) and your PFA results (the last 5 years worth, including any that were waived or skipped for any reason).

    MAKE it into a website, so people can see, with proof, if your issues are valid.

    I am sure most of you will see why you or your spouse are being separated.

  8. This is all thru my hubby it’s also in the cut 11 years and always good at his work all see duty and always take care my job, home, and our kids, finally was his first year short duty, we planning buying a house, and other more things, but now I feel very sad, depress thinking what’s going to happen??? With us, I am afraid that what I am AFRAID… We also thinking to send my kids to my birth country until we can stay stable, the only thing I do is cry, when I should be happy that my hubby it’s about to cme back from 8 months deployment.
    I am afraid and my family will probably have to separate.

  9. I am torn between the Navy’s motive of saving money and keeping only the best. It’s ultra competitive and if Sailors themselves and leadership are not razor sharp on instructions and how to write Evals many Sailors could suffer. Simply put you come in the Navy you better read and learn quickly. There are Third classes now that have 7 Certs, Work Center Sup, complete all pins, and do E-6 jobs. How can the average Sailor compete with that you can’t. The times have changed and there is no 1 single solution to these situations.

Reply To Whitney Cancel Reply