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NEWS | Feb. 15, 2011

"Diamond Compliance Corner" - Week of Feb. 11 - 18

By Master Sgt. Marcus T. Harris 11th Logistics Readiness Squadron first sergeant

Usually, it is best not to open your mouth unless you know what you are talking about. I say that because, I recall a few years back, I went into a military facility and saw an Airman in uniform wearing the Cardigan Sweater. He had the sweater unbuttoned and it was just flapping as he sashayed from room to room. I pulled the Airman aside and politely told him that if he was going to wear the sweater it had to be buttoned. Not arguing, the Airman buttoned the sweater. Later that day I did a little research and to my surprise, I was wrong. The sweater does not fall into the category of coats and jackets that must be removed when indoors or zipped up at least three-fourths when wearing.

As a senior non-commissioned officer, often when it came to dress and appearance, I could usually find the information I needed by referring to the Professional Development Guide (PDG). Sometimes it requires us to dig a little deeper to find the compliance material we seek. The moral of this story is that the information I gave the Airman was not located in the PDG and that I should have made sure I knew what I was talking about before I spoke.

Regardless of our rank, we can all learn. I'm always thinking that, not only do the Airmen we are appointed over look up to us, they also expect us to know what we are talking about, especially when we direct them to do something. So, to prevent you from making the same mistake I did, I took from the Air Force Personnel Center's official uniform site, the proper wear of the Cardigan Sweater.

According to AFPC's official uniform site, the Cardigan Sweater must:
A. Be buttoned outdoors and or either all buttons fastened or unbuttoned indoors.
B. Tie/Tab is optional.
C. Collar of shirt may be worn inside or outside of sweater.
D. Sleeves may not be worn pushed up.
E. Officers and senior NCOs wear shoulder mark rank insignia. All other enlisted members wear metal rank insignia 5/8 inch from edge and centered. Center the metal rank horizontally on the epaulet with bottom of insignia 1-inch from shoulder seam.

Keep in mind that we soon have our Compliance Inspection and how we look says a lot about how we do business.