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New AFI brings clarification

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- New regulations were included in the release of Air Force Instruction 1-1 that affect all Air Force members and could make new actions punishable by the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

"According to Article 92 of the UCMJ, any violation of an AFI (could fall) under dereliction of duty," said Capt. Eric McCutchen, 460th Space Wing Judge Advocate chief of military justice, "but at the same time, most commanders do not pick random things out of AFIs and Article 15 or court martial Airmen for them."

The Secretary of the Air Force released AFI 1-1 Aug. 7. This document references many previous AFIs in order to clarify and restate important instructions.

"I would say that Airmen are on extra notice about these," said McCutchen. "These parts are really important and ones that Airmen need to make sure are done."

One significant change is the inclusion of guidelines surrounding the use of social media.

The AFI states Airmen must avoid offensive and inappropriate behavior on media sites and on other forms of communication. Such conduct could bring discredit, diminishing the trust and confidence of the public.

"According to this section, if you do anything that would bring discredit to the Air Force and your Facebook page says you work for the USAF, your actions (could be) punishable under this AFI as a dereliction of duty," McCutchen stated.

Other important changes to the regulation include guidelines regarding professional activities, dependent care, housing and many others.

"This AFI is essentially almost like a CliffsNotes of what you need to be worried about," said McCutchen.

This AFI is not only important from a legal standpoint, but also important for Airmen's daily activities.

"As with any policy within the Armed Forces, each Airman has a responsibility to understand the rules and regulations important to them," said Master Sgt. Brandy Sharp, 460th Mission Support Group first sergeant. "All Airmen should read this AFI in order to be cognizant of their duties."

This AFI is available on the Air Force e-Publishing website at http://www.e-publishing.af.mil/shared/media/epubs/AFI1-1.pdf.
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