This story was essentially a promotional piece for the US Military. Only a Military Recruiter and recent enlistees voices were heard. Viewers are not told that these new monetary incentives will be paid for by tax dollars, just the amounts are mentioned. The recruiter tells viewers that the reasons that people are signing up are because of Patriotism and 9/11, but neither the recruiter nor the reporter verify if this indeed is based on fact. Considering that the new enlistee in the story is Latina and that other video b-roll used shows a young African American male talking to a recruiter, maybe race or poverty might be a factor in people signing up. With an issue as serious as joining the military it is extremely important for reporters to provide multiple perspectives on this issue.
WXMI 17 News reader With an ongoing war in the Middle East military recruiters nationwide are having trouble meeting their goals. Congress is spending more than $460 million in recruitment and retention bonuses, which has some local recruiters dangling some big bucks.
Reporter Well the war may be a deterrent in some places according to recruiters not here. Army National Guard Recruiters are offering $10,000 bonuses for new recruits, $15,000 if you have prior service. Of course, there is no way to tell if you will be deployed, a deal breaker for some. But here in West Michigan recruiters say its still fertile ground for fresh troops.
Reporter A scene that happens thousands of times a day all across the country. Sgt. Valez and Jannelle Moncada discussing her orders to ship out.
Female who recently enlisted Because its exciting. I need excitement.
Reporter Jannelle signed up for 6 years part time, a small victory for a military struggling to fulfill the recruitment quotas. With National Guard and Reserve deployments to Iraq becoming common.
Recruiter Mom and Dad have concerns, they have concerns, but we tell them you cant go anywhere until you finish high school. You got to finish basic training, you got to finish job training, but there is a chance that you will be deployed. They need to understand that when they join that there is a chance that they could be deployed.
Reporter So it is up to recruiters to do some hard selling, college money, training, and thousands of dollars in bonuses. Jannelle understands that shipping out to war is part of the job.
Female who recently enlisted That is a risk I have to take. I mean it has been in our heads and that is why we have been contemplated whether to do it.
Reporter Nationwide recruiters might be struggling, but here in West Michigan the Guard has already met their numbers for the year and recruiters say its all not about bonuses and college money.
Recruiter Patriotism, they want to serve. I have been recruiting for almost 13 years now. I did 8 and a half years Army Recruiting and I have seen a lot of stuff. Since 9/11 came on there is a lot of people that want to serve their country.
Reporter Exciting is what Jannelle is looking for even though some of her friends think shes crazy.
Female who recently enlisted Maybe, but oh well. It sounds like fun.
Reporter Jannelle will be assigned to the 1073rd Maintenance Company in Greenville. Last October 200 of them were sent to Iraq. Heads off to basic training, Fort Jackson, South Carolina.
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