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Got a gripe for the Army? A program designed to address the concerns of soldiers, families and those assigned to Army bases is soliciting comments at Camp Zama for a symposium there in late March.

People can submit their issues, comments and concerns by March 8 for the Army Family Action Plan symposium scheduled March 28-30.

Forms are available online and at several locations at Camp Zama and its satellites.

Changes after last year’s symposium included lengthening post visiting hours, allowing pregnant soldiers to move to family housing before giving birth, and setting shoppette and post office hours that better serve soldiers’ needs.

Patty Centeno, the community life specialist for Army Community Service at Camp Zama, said people can submit problems anytime. Many are addressed under the base mayor’s program. But bigger issues go to the annual symposium and, if they can’t be resolved there, up the chain to U.S. Army Pacific or the Department of the Army level.

The program last year accepted serious concerns from installations in Japan such as soldiers receiving only partial cost-of-living allowance and, from Torii Station on Okinawa, locally hired civilians not being able to enroll their children in Okinawa’s Department of Defense Dependents Schools with the same priority levels as stateside hires.

The program has a parallel program for teens on Army bases, who will have their own symposium this weekend. That program last year led to a school bus shelter for kids, healthier lunchroom choices and more time between classes.

Call Centeno at DSN 263-5550 for information.

Issue forms

Residents and employees at Army bases in Japan can find and submit Army Family Action Plan “issue forms” at the following locations. Submissions must be received by March 8.

Zama Mail RoomArmy Community Service, Building 402Zama Youth CenterBuilding 101 CafeteriaDepot Lounge (Sagami Depot)Zama Community ClubPost ExchangeZama Golf CourseYano Fitness CenterBuilding 102 LobbySagamihara Housing Area CommissaryForms also are available online.

— Juliana Gittler


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