By Ohio National Guard Public Affairs
COLUMBUS, Ohio (05/12/23)
Since 2020 and the onset of a global pandemic, the world and its inhabitants have gone through significant changes, and the importance of human connection and self-care have become more evident. In this timeframe, service members’ priorities have shifted, work environments look and feel different, all while expectations have increased.
These converging factors ultimately have resulted in the identified need for new programs focusing on support for service members and families.
The Ohio National Guard recently established a J9 Directorate, which is a comprehensive wellness program specifically focused on prevention, risk reduction and resiliency for its members and their families. The J9 incorporates existing Ohio National Guard programs — including, but not limited to, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR), Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP), Behavioral Health, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) — together with new programs concentrated on awareness and mitigating self-directed harm, violence and substance abuse. It will additionally expand current service member and family-based services by placing them underneath a single manager and dedicated staff that is better able to understand broader issues and trends, and to move to resolve them with the appropriate resources and experts.
“The J9 will increase our commanders’ capability to build readiness by implementing programs that generate healthy and resilient Airmen and Soldiers.”
“The J9 will increase our commanders’ capability to build readiness by implementing programs that generate healthy and resilient Airmen and Soldiers,” said Nicole Gabriel, director of the Ohio National Guard’s Integrated Primary Prevention Program.
The J9 is implementing the “no wrong door policy,” which is a program to improve service member care. Individuals who seek information about available assistance, resources and services from any OHNG office will receive full assistance and not be denied or inappropriately delayed in receiving care, information or support because of an individual’s inability to navigate available resources or assistance.
“This is a win for the entire Ohio National Guard community and our team is eager to do our part,” Gabriel said.
Maj. Gen. John C. Harris Jr., Ohio adjutant general, sees this new directorate as an essential aspect of effectively compounding resources and services, while continuing to make member access to assistance and support an organizational priority.
“The J9 allows us to move quickly from what were multiple isolated programs looking to resolve issues independently, into a collective approach seeking to resolve service member and military family concerns as they emerge, not after they occur,” Harris said. “The term ‘no wrong door’ is a simple way to understand how the J9 functions, as any of our programs now serve as a direct path to the right care, protection or empowerment.”