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Navy and Marine Corps Fraternization Policy. University of Pennsylvania Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps. HISTORY. “Custom” is a long established practice, which has attained the force of law within the military.

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navy and marine corps fraternization policy
Navy and Marine Corps Fraternization Policy

University of PennsylvaniaNaval Reserve Officer Training Corps

  • “Custom” is a long established practice, which has attained the force of law within the military.
  • Proper social interaction among officer and enlisted members enhances unit morale and esprit de corps.
history con t
HISTORY (con’t)
  • Unduly familiar personal relationships:
    • Undermine respect for authority
    • Inhibit mission accomplishment
  • Experience has demonstrated that seniors must maintain thoroughly professional relationships with juniors at all times.
history con t1
HISTORY (con’t)
  • Custom recognizes the need to prevent use of senior grade or position that results in (or gives the appearance of):
      • Favoritism
      • Preferential treatment
      • Personal gain
  • Custom requires that junior personnel recognize and respect authority.
fraternization defined
  • A term traditionally used to identify personal relationships that contravene the customary bounds of acceptable senior-subordinate relationships.
  • Also includes improper relationships and social interaction between officer members of different grades and enlisted members of different grades.
navy and marine corps fraternization policy1
  • Personal, unduly familiar relationships that do not respect differences in rank and grade are prohibited.
fraternization policy con t
  • Relationships that are unduly familiar between officers of different rank/grade or between enlisted members of different rank/grade are prohibited.
  • These relationships may sacrifice good order and discipline or be of such nature that they bring discredit on the Naval Service.
fraternization policy con t1
  • Commands are expected to take administrative and disciplinary action as necessary.
prohibited relationships


  • Personal relationships that are unduly familiar between:
    • Chief Petty Officers (E-7 to E-9) and junior personnel (E-1 to E-6)
    • Officers and enlisted personnel
    • Staff/Instructor and Student Personnel
    • Recruiters and recruits/applicants
prohibited relationships con t


  • If such relationships exist:
    • A senior’s objectivity can be called into question.
    • It can result in actual or apparent preferential treatment.
    • It can undermine the authority of the senior member.
    • It can compromise the chain of command.
prohibited relationships con t1


  • Mirrors Navy policy, except that the same provisions apply to the relationship of noncommissioned officers (E-4 to E-5) with their subordinates (E-1 to E-3).
  • Personal relationships between officers and enlisted are prohibited.
Surrounding circumstances often determine whether the conduct in question is appropriate or not.
proper relationships
  • Appropriate personal relationships are an important part of building unit morale and esprit de corps.
  • Examples:
    • Officer and enlisted personnel playing on the same command sports team.
    • Other command-sponsored events.
inappropriate behaviors
  • Behaviors considered unduly familiar and inappropriate:
    • Dating
    • Shared living accommodations
    • Intimate or sexual relations
    • Commercial solicitations
    • Private business partnerships
    • Gambling and borrowing money between officers and enlisted members
  • Article 134, UCMJ
  • Article 133, UCMJ
  • Article 92, UCMJ
other remedies
  • Non-punitive
  • Formal or informal counseling
  • Transfer of one or both parties
  • Evaluation or Fitness Report comments
  • NJP
  • Court-martial
marriage other relations
  • Conduct not excused by subsequent marriage.
  • Okay if married before commissioned.
  • If married or related, must maintain official relationship while on duty.
  • Must not be in the same chain of command.
nrotc fraternization
NROTC Fraternization
  • Midshipmen are not allowed to establish relationships with enlisted (MECEPS, OCs, members of the fleet) or officers
  • Possible Exception: If you start the relationship when you are in an equivalent grade eg: The marriage exception
  • Any questions should be addressed to your unit advisor
on cruise
On Cruise
  • Midshipmen are subject to the UCMJ fraternization articles while on cruise (Both Navy and Marine Options)
  • In most cases, any type of social contact with enlisted personnel is prohibited during Marine Option Cruises
  • Midshipmen from NROTC Philadelphia HAVE gotten kicked out of cruises such as CORTRAMID in the past for fraternization and were subject to an investigation
midshipmen dating
Midshipmen Dating
  • Midshipmen ARE allowed to date other midshipmen within the unit, however keep the following in mind
    • NROTC unit staff must be aware of the situation
    • In most cases, two midshipmen that are dating will be moved to separate companies within the battalion
    • Both MIDN must act professional to each other during all ROTC-related functions
fraternization consequences for midn
Fraternization Consequences for MIDN
  • Besides being covered under the UCMJ for the MIDN, other consequences include:
    • Aptitude Probation
    • LOA
    • Disenrollment from the Program
  • Fraternization is a gender-neutral concept.
  • Seniors throughout the chain of command will:
    • Provide guidance on appropriate relationships.
    • Ensure all personnel are aware of the current policy.
    • Provide annual indoctrination/ training.
    • Address prohibited behavior.
responsibility con t
  • Responsibility is shared by all individuals, but ultimately rests on the senior.
  • The leader must be careful to avoid even the perception of fraternization.
  • When allegations are made, the CO must carefully study both the case at hand and the fraternization directives.