The Army has begun fielding more than 200 sets of the new Army Green Service Uniform (AGSU) to recruiters and other soldiers who will participate in a limited user evaluation to make sure the new two-tone uniform is ready for its planned fielding to new soldiers in 2020.
Senior leaders have been modeling the updated version of the iconic World War II uniform at public events, but so far, its appearances have been limited. The Army approved the uniform late last year to replace the blue Army Service Uniform (ASU) for everyday wear.
“Our dress blue uniform is our historically accurate uniform from 1775; it is enduring, it needs to stay and it’s going to stay,” Dailey told an audience Wednesday at an Association of the United States Army breakfast while dressed in his AGSU.
But the ASU doesn’t present a recognizable soldier image to most of America, Dailey said, relating a story about wearing the ASU on the streets of Chicago and watching traffic stop as he held up his hand to wave to someone he knew.
“I was dressed almost like a Chicago police officer,” Dailey said. “We weren’t getting recognized as soldiers in the eyes of the greater American public.”
Dailey said the limited user evaluation is designed to fine-tune the fit and small aspects of the Army Green Uniform as well as ensure that industry can “actually manufacture at the quality and the standard and the quantity that we need.”
The Army issued about 165 AGSUs to active and National Guard recruiters from the New England Recruiting Battalion in late March and plans to issue another 69 AGSUs to recruiters for the evaluation, Army spokeswoman Heather Hagan told Military.com.
“So, the design is done, the colors are done, but we are still making small tweaks to the overall fit and performance, the material and things like that,” Dailey said.
The plan is to begin issuing the AGSU to new soldiers in 2020. The current ASU will become the Army's optional dress uniform.
New soldiers will be issued the AGSU jacket, two pairs of pants, socks, brown leather shoes, a short-sleeve shirt and long-sleeve shirt, necktie, garrison cap and an all-weather coat, according to Army officials. Female soldiers will have the option of wearing a skirt and pumps.
Soldiers are also authorized to wear the black beret with the AGSU as well as an optional service cap with brown leather trim available for purchase, Army officials have said.
All soldiers will be required to wear the new uniform by 2028. The extended phase-in period is intended to give enlisted soldiers time to save up their annual clothing allowance to pay for the new higher-quality uniform, according to Army officials.
The AGSU jacket will be made of a 55/45 blend poly-wool elastique fabric. The pants will feature a gabardine weave made of a 55/45 poly-wool blend as well. The shirt will be made of a 75/25 cotton-poly blend. The higher-quality fabric will give the AGSU a service life of six years compared to the ASU's four-year service life, Army officials have said.
-- Matthew Cox can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.