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Brenda Farrell, director of DoD Strategic Human Capital Management at GAO, discusses a new report on racial and gender disparities in the DoD justice system, and why keeping detailed data on the subject is important.

In the 2019 NDAA, the Government Accountability Office was tasked with determining if there were racial and gender disparities in the military justice system. A recently released report says that the military needs more data to make that determination. Brenda Farrell, director of DoD Strategic Human Capital Management at GAO, says that they combed through all the data they had available.


“We were looking to see if they had consistent data, so we extracted data from 15 databases. Personnel databases, military justice databases and investigations databases. The time period covered physical year 2013 through 2017. That was the latest available,” said Farrell. “We worked with very closely with DoD officials including those who oversaw those databases to make sure we understood what those data fields represented. We found that the data was inconsistent. The gender data is collected, but the services inconsistently collected in those three databases that I mentioned.”

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