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NEWS | June 19, 2020

Feedback Fridays

By By Brig. Gen. Caroline M. Miller 502d Air Base Wing Commander

Feedback Fridays is a weekly forum that aims to connect the 502d Air Base Wing with members of the Joint Base San Antonio community. Questions are collected during commander’s calls, town hall meetings and throughout the week.

If you have a question or concern, please send an email to RandolphPublicAffairs@us.af.mil using the subject line “Feedback Fridays.” Questions will be further researched and published as information becomes available.

Q. My question is considering how the JBSA-Fort Sam Houston Commissary cleans their shopping carts.

I picked up a cart from the return cart area, thinking that there are sanitation wipes inside, which there normally are. I asked the ID checker where the wipes were, she said that they didn’t have any, but carts are “cleaned periodically.”

When I asked to speak with a supervisor, I was directed to an office towards the center of the cashier area. When I knocked and asked for a supervisor, I was told she wasn’t in. When I asked when she would be, I was told it would be shortly. It was 10:30 a.m.

At 1 p.m., another worker asked if I would like to speak with a manager. The assistant manager came in and had nothing but excuses, instead of answers about the sanitation of carts and about the employee being evasive about the supervisor’s time to be at work.

She mentioned that workers periodically sanitize the carts. I explained that I saw people return carts and older patrons use them without being cleaned. They need to have a dedicated staff member monitoring their cleaning service on carts, as well as having signs for clean or unsafe carts. Thank you.

A. Thank you for your question. The commissary appreciates customer feedback and it helps improve their processes. Customer service and safety is a top priority.

The store will now have the carts the baggers bring to the corral sanitized prior to re-use or they will put them in the non-sanitized cart location. There are signs posted outside that state which are sanitized carts and non-sanitized carts.

The commissary will put signs up stating the corrals in the parking lot are not sanitized.

 For more information or further concerns, you can reach out to the patron awareness representatives directly at either Jennifer.stevens@deca.mil or Yolanda.bowden@deca.mil and they will be able to provide direct assistance.

Q. When are Basic Military Training graduations going to resume? The patriotism, love, and pride that is exhibited each week is inspiring.

The families who come on base are so positively impacted by BMT graduations.

BMT graduations also provide a huge economic impact on the base (clubs, AAFES, food courts, etc.), the community, and the city of San Antonio. Thank you!

A. We know how significant BMT graduation is and understand you would like to be there in person to congratulate your Airman.

The health and safety of trainees and staff are at the forefront of our decision-making, and at this time, BMT graduation remains closed to guests. Leadership is monitoring the situation in coordination with medical experts to determine when guest attendance at graduation events will resume.

For the safety of Airmen and staff, newly graduated Airmen are transitioning directly to technical training and are not allowed visitors at this time.

Once Airmen arrive at technical training, their new squadrons will provide them an update on the ability to travel off base or have visitors come to visit based on the direction of the Installation commander and DOD guidance.

This determination is based on the priority of keeping them safe and the completion of their technical training requirements. For JBSA updates, visit https://www.jbsa.mil/coronavirus/.

BMT graduation is live-streamed on the USAF Basic Military Training Facebook page @USAFBMT and will be archived for later viewing on the 37th Training Wing YouTube Channel at “Gateway Wing.” Photos from each week’s graduation ceremony will also be uploaded as an album to the Gateway Wing Flickr page at www.flickr.com/photos/gatewaywing.

As guidance changes, updates will be shared on the USAF Basic Military Training Facebook page @USAFBMT.

Q. As local, state, and federal regulations are being lifted in a phased approach, it has been stated that the health and safety of JBSA personnel will remain a top priority, while a deliberate, phased approach is executed on the post.

What does the phased approach entail? What will occur in each phase and what criterion is required to meet that phase? Is there any timeline on when “official business only” status will be lifted and DOD ID holders will be allowed back on base?

A. Health Protection Condition, or HPCON, Bravo indicates a moderate disease threat and risk of exposure to personnel, and the Public Health Emergency remains in effect at JBSA. Also, JBSA has discontinued “official business only” for base access.

A phased reopening entails the base opening and returning services to normal in stages. The situation is constantly evolving and leadership continues to monitor the situation to decide on the best phases as well as health practices based on state, city and guidelines to lower the risk and spread of COVID-19.

For the latest information, please continue to monitor https://www.jbsa.mil/Information/CDC-Novel-Coronavirus-Response-Support/ and follow us on Joint Base San Antonio Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/JointBaseSanAntonio/.

Q. When will the gyms open for retirees?

A. Thank you for your feedback. To protect the health and safety of our patrons and employees, we took a phased approach to re-opening our fitness centers. 

As of June 9, JBSA Fitness Centers are open to DOD civilians, retirees, and eligible dependents from 9-11 a.m. (JBSA-Lackland, JBSA-Randolph and JBSA-Fort Sam Houston), 1-3 p.m. (JBSA-Lackland, JBSA-Randolph and JBSA-Fort Sam Houston), and 7 p.m. to close only (JBSA-Lackland and JBSA-Fort Sam Houston only). 

With this phased re-opening, we’ve established some mandatory protective measures for all patrons and employees (listed below). 

As we continue to closely monitor the state of the city and other installations throughout the DOD, we will provide updates and continue our phased re-openings to follow federal and state guidelines.

·       100 percent ID check is mandatory when not in uniform.

·       100percent health screening for all personnel prior to entering the facility

·       Masks/cloth coverings must be work when entering/exiting the facility and in all areas when 6 feet of social distancing cannot be maintained.

·       Patrons must wipe down equipment prior and after use.

·       Patrons must limit their total workout time to 60 minutes maximum.