Chief's Commentary: COVID-19

  • Published
  • By Chief Master Sgt. Vicki Robertson, 94th Airlift Wing Command Chief

Team Dobbins, 

As we move towards almost a month of this new COVID-19 normal, it’s vital that we continue to communicate, stay in sync and take care of each other. As we assess the situation, planning is ongoing for actions we might have to take in what we call a move from HPCON Charlie to Charlie+ and Delta. I tell you this not to raise the alarm or worry you. Your leadership is proactively examining all the potential actions we might need to implement if COVID-19 numbers in our community rise significantly and how that may impact our members and families. 

To keep everyone up to date, Public Affairs has installed a COVID-19 button on our 94th Airlift Wing App. The App can be downloaded by searching for AFConnect and searching for 94th Airlift Wing once it’s installed. The Air Force Reserve Command also has a page within the App to give information.

Unfortunately, health professionals are still predicting that COVID-19 cases in Georgia and other places will rise. The commanders across the Reserve Command continue to communicate with the Chief of the Air Force Reserve daily to stay in synch as this is a nationwide response. For those who have to work from the base, we’ve added to our cleaning contracts and purposely built in the ability to expand further as the need arises.  

We understand the hardships that many of the restrictions have caused and recognize there are some things we can do. While the April UTA has been rescheduled, we are actively working on possible solutions for members to telework some or all UTA periods for future months. This is a tentative concept, but we have great potential to perform in this manner. This would be done with various means of completing CBT's, writing EPR/OPR's, and accomplishing training tasks that could be done through video teleconferencing. Of course, with this option there will be requirements to submit for pay. We are working through the process and will get any new guidance to your leadership as soon as it’s available.   

We’ve seen a few communication challenges this week with network connectivity. Our communication teams are ready to respond as soon as we discover any issues.  We know telework is not always easy and sometimes impossible, but we are improving and learning every day.

We are balancing our actions with an eye on mental health as well. Thank you for talking to your unit leadership the last couple days. We have concluded a 100% contact conversation throughout the wing. Many of you have similar concerns over school, loss of income in your home, high risk family members, or sometimes confusing or seemingly contradictory guidance issued by the wing, state/local officials or Department of Defense sites. We hear you and are working on all of your concerns, many of which we have elevated to the Reserve Command and Headquarters Air Force. Unfortunately many in our Reserve family are dealing with the death of a loved one, who are sometimes thousands of miles away. We will continue to expedite these and other travel waivers so that you can be with your loved ones. Our hearts go out to all who have experienced loss compounded with the difficulty of isolation.       

Now more than ever we need each other. Thank you for your encouraging words to each other and continued care of our Air Force Reserve family! If you need anything we would love to hear from you. We will be opening a forum on the 94 Airlift Wing Facebook page to accept and address your questions in the near future. Please log on and ask away!

Proud to serve alongside you!


Chief Robertson, 94 AW Command Chief