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With Housing Woes as Backdrop, Army Fields Family Survey

Base housing at Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (MARTIN EGNASH/STARS AND STRIPES)
Base housing at Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (MARTIN EGNASH/STARS AND STRIPES)

In the wake of a series of reports detailing lead poisoning and mold problems in family housing on Army bases across the U.S., the service is fielding a new survey asking on-base residents for their "candid feedback," according to a release posted late last month.

The survey, created by the Army's Installation Management Command (IMCOM), was scheduled to hit inboxes starting Jan. 15, the release said.

"Your feedback about your experiences while residing in Army-owned or leased housing is critical to shaping the future housing and services provided by the Army," Lt. Gen. Gwen Bingham, the Army's assistant chief of staff for installation management, said in the release.

The survey is being sent in two stages, Army officials said in the release. First, about 10,000 residents living in Army-owned and -leased housing worldwide will be queried, with a response due date of Feb. 14. Then, in late March, a similar survey will be sent to residents in privatized housing.

This is the second such survey to be sent to residents, the release said. The first, sent last year, had a response rate of 20.3 percent among residents of Army-owned housing. Officials said they are aiming to increase this year's participation.

The survey program is operated by contractor CEL & Associates. Surveys are to be delivered by email to one member of each household from the address ArmyHousingSurvey@celassociates.com, the release said.

The Army is pushing the survey through a variety of releases and even a video public service announcement from Holly Dailey, spouse of Sergeant Major of the Army Daniel Dailey.

"The Army is looking for your help in identifying where it can make the [biggest] impact with its resourcing decisions, and how its partners are doing in providing housing services to residents in privatized housing," she said in the video, posted early this month.

A series of Reuters reports last year detailed lead poisoning among the children of soldiers living on Army bases, including Fort Benning, Georgia. And a separate Reuters investigation in late December detailed mold, lead paint and other problems in housing operated by contractor Corvias Group, including at Fort Meade, Maryland; Fort Polk, Louisiana; and Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

-- Amy Bushatz can be reached at amy.bushatz@military.com.

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