Rehabilitation Project Force - Development

Development

The Rehabilitation Project Force developed out of a predecessor group, the Mud Box Brigade, aboard L. Ron Hubbard's private fleet in the late 1960s. The mud box is a small perforated screening box fitted to the suction pipe in the bilge of a ship, and is designed to catch larger solid waste before it can choke the pipeline and potentially damage the pump. The Mud Box Brigade was assigned to clean out the mud box as well as fuel lines, water hues, bilges and so on. As this involved cleaning foul-smelling waste by hand, it was understandably not a popular task.

Hubbard defined the role as being essentially a punishment duty for unsatisfactory workers: "More candidates will be appointed regularly and promptly every time I find a freeloader who is loafing on post and drifting with the wind." "This group is the most downstat and one gets assigned to it by being a freeloader, invisible on post, loafing and really goofing up on one's job." J. Gordon Melton, however, suggested that "Hubbard understood it in terms of making retribution to the people who had been harmed by the nonperformance or incorrect performance of one's assigned tasks."

In 1969 Hubbard replaced the Mud Box Brigade with the Rehabilitation Unit, again intended for those removed or disciplined "as ineffective or trouble." Following an evaluation, the individual was to receive a set of "specific recommendations which if followed will rehabilitate the individual as a highly effective and worthwhile Sea Org member." Hubbard instructed that "The unit is worked hard during the day on a rigorous schedule on jobs assigned by the Review Chief handling corrective areas and jobs needing remedy and repair. The Unit itself is thus made into an effective ship's review team. It works on a one job, one time, one place formula completing each job before moving into the next. Each individual thus earns the right to the remedial services he or she will receive."

Finally, the Rehabilitation Unit was replaced in January 1974 with the Rehabilitation Project Force or RPF. According to Hubbard, "the RPF has been created by the Commodore so that redemption can occur. That is basically its only purpose." He identified four categories of people who were to be assigned to the RPF: "rockslammers" (people deemed to have hidden evil intentions, as detected by the E-meter); people who were unproductive and scored poorly on the Oxford Capacity Analysis personality test; "repeated stat crashers", people who were held responsible for declines in Scientology organizations' productivity; and "overt product makers", people who produced poor-quality work. As before, the unit was to work on "one job, one place, one time." A five-hour study period was to be implemented each day to improve the individuals' knowledge of Scientology. According to David G. Bromley and Douglas E. Cowan, the RPF involves a daily regimen of five hours of auditing or studying, eight hours of work, often physical labor, such as building renovation, and at least seven hours of sleep.

The RPF was originally intended to last no more than a couple of months, where the assignee would learn Scientology auditing, if he or she was not already an auditor by the "read it, drill it, do it" method. RPF members would then co-audit each other to better themselves and make each other more ethical and productive.

Read more about this topic:  Rehabilitation Project Force

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