ASAP hosts Unit Prevention Leader Course

By Jan McCall
USAG Stuttgart Community Ready & Resilient Integrator

Each quarter, the USAG Stuttgart Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) offers the Unit Prevention Leaders (UPL) training. In January, 11 Soldiers from units across the garrison completed the three-day course, which was instructed by garrison Drug Testing Coordinator Antonynette Erron (better known as ‘Ms. Toni’). Following the training, newly certified UPLs serve as the commanders’ subject matter expert on the drug testing portion of the Army Substance Abuse Program, conducting mandatory and command-directed tests.

Sgt. 1st Class Luis Barrera (left) holds a sample collection bottle as part of Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) Unit Prevention Leaders (UPL) training as Staff Sgt. Ryan Day looks on. Photo by Jan McCall.

While testing is required, the UPLs also play a key role in the prevention and reduction of at-risk behaviors.

According to Army Regulation 600-85, “substance abuse contributes to high-risk behaviors, runs counter to Army Values and erodes personal readiness.”

Sgt. Wesley Himbrick tests a breathalyzer device as Dr. Bala Fischer, USAG Stuttgart ASAP director (standing), provides training. Photo by Jan McCall.

“As advisors, educators, and practitioners, UPLs support the command to build readiness, resilience, and optimize personal and unit performance,” Erron said, summarizing their main contributions.

Good training doesn’t happen without a little humor. Watching Sgt. 1st Class Luis Barrera, of the 52nd Signal Battalion, and Staff Sgt. Calea Smith, of Special Operations Command Africa, demonstrate the collection procedure had everyone laughing. Even the ASAP Program Director, Dr. Balasubramaniam Fischer, joined in to teach students about the use of the breathalyzer and to reinforce the blood alcohol limit in Germany of 0.05 (and 0.03 for anyone involved in a vehicle accident).

All Army units are required to have 2 UPLs: a primary and an alternate. Classes are held in the basement of building 2948 on Panzer Kaserne, next to the gym. In addition, UPL certification training is offered at Molesworth, UK, once a year through the USAG Stuttgart ASAP office. To register for the next UPL class, contact Ms. Antonynette Erron, Installation Drug Testing Coordinator, at DSN: 314-596-3061, or email