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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Military Uniform Procurement: Questions and Answers

Valerie Bailey Grasso
Specialist in Defense Acquisition

Military uniforms are procured through the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), an agency of the Department of Defense (DOD). DLA is DOD’s largest combat support agency, providing worldwide logistics support for the United States (U.S.) military services, civilian agencies, and foreign countries. With headquarters in Fort Belvoir, Virginia, DLA operates three supply centers including DLA Troop Support [formerly Defense Supply Center Philadelphia (DSCP)] in Philadelphia, PA.

DLA Troop Support is responsible for procuring nearly all of the food, clothing, and medical supplies used by the military, about 90% of the construction materiel used by troops in the field as well as repair parts for aircraft, combat vehicles, and other weapons system platforms. Within DLA Troop Support, the Clothing and Textile (C&T) Directorate supplies more than 8,000 different items ranging from uniforms to footwear and equipment. According to DLA Troop Support’s website, sales of goods exceeded $14.5 billion during 2009.

Legislative initiatives which may affect the procurement of military uniforms include S. Amdt 4640 to S. 3454, the proposed FY2011 National Defense Authorization Act, which would require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to the House and Senate Armed Services Committees, not later than February 28, 2011, that presents an analysis of alternatives for the procurement of fire-resistant and fire-retardant fibers and materials for the production of military products (like uniforms). Congress has determined that vehicle and aircraft fires remain a significant force protection and safety threat, whether they occur during ongoing combat operations or while training for future deployment. Given the high probability that these types of injuries will continue to occur, this amendment seeks to determine if there are advanced fiber products that may provide greater protection against burn injuries to members of the Armed Forces. It should be noted that the Secretary of Defense’ Report to Congress is due prior to the issuance of a similar report from the Comptroller General’s (CG) report.

Date of Report: November 23, 2010
Number of Pages: 6
Order Number: RS20550
Price: $19.95

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