Army Uniform Board votes on proposed changes, including female-specific uniform elements

By Zack Kevit, Army G-4September 14, 2020

Gen. James C. McConville, and Lt. Gen. R. Scott Dingle wearing masks similar to what will now be standard issue.
Gen. James C. McConville, and Lt. Gen. R. Scott Dingle wearing masks similar to what will now be standard issue. (Photo Credit: Rebecca L. Westfall) VIEW ORIGINAL

WASHINGTON – On June 25th, members of the 151st Army Uniform Board (AUB) met to discuss and vote on recommended changes to the clothing bag. Discussion topics included standard issue items for all Soldiers and more specific items for female Soldiers. Topics approved by the AUB are put forth to the Chief of Staff of the Army (CSA) for final decision.

General decision criteria was guided by AUB Chairman Lt. Gen. Duane Gamble, Deputy Chief of Staff G-4, when he noted that “while evaluating these topics, we must look for low-cost, high-quality options for the force.”

Further supporting Gamble’s guidance, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael A. Grinston emphasized the importance of value when weighing any decisions to approve or disapprove. “Any cost increase must be supported by performance data,” he said.

The AUB’s recommended approvals to the CSA include:

  • Type II OCP Combat Cloth Face Covering (CCFC) as standard issue in the clothing bag,
  • authorizing the Improved Hot Weather Combat Uniform – Female (IHWCU-F) in the clothing bag and as an optional uniform,
  • developing the Maternity Army Physical Fitness Uniform (Maternity APFU) for immediate user evaluation,
  • planning a phased transition from the current Hot Weather Combat Boot (HW ACB) to the Improved Hot Weather Combat Boot (IHW ACB),
  • conducting a study on adding the Army Combat Glove to Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) Specific clothing bags, all Soldier’s clothing bags, or maintain it at Rapid Fielding Initiative (RFI) Issue only,
  • issuing Black Athletic Socks to initial entry Soldiers instead of providing a cash allowance to buy the socks from the AAFES Troop Store,
  • perform research and development for material solutions to improve the quality and functionality of athletic bras for initial entry Soldiers and for the Rapid Fielding Initiative supporting deploying Soldiers.

Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. James C. McConville approved all of the AUB recommendations on August 28th. Program Executive Office (PEO)-Soldier will implement changes and authorizations to the clothing bag in accordance with manufacturing and contract timelines. Studies for the Maternity APFU, the army combat glove, and the athletic bra are forthcoming and will be evaluated at future AUBs.

The AUB is the Army's only forum to address the changing requirements of Soldiers' uniforms and accessory items. Every Soldier can contribute to the Uniform Board process by providing his or her recommendation to his or her unit's sergeant major. Incorporating the feedback from our Soldiers is a big part of the AUB process.

Members of the AUB include male and female Soldiers of all levels, and representatives from the active component, the Army Reserve, and the Army National Guard. Each member has an equal vote in deciding which recommendations go forth to the Chief of Staff of the Army.

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