Commentary

May 3, 2013

A little ESGR education can go a long way

Jim Strickland
ESGR Reserve Component Liaison

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. — Upon completion of my five-level seasonal training, I submitted my application for reemployment to my employer, asking to return to my pre-service position. I received a warm welcome and everyone in the shop expressed appreciation for my service to country.

During my reintegration back into the company, an official from the Human Resources department stated that I would have to wait until the next open season to start health insurance coverage.

Thanks to the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve briefing I received, I recalled benefits were supposed to start immediately upon my return to civilian employment.

Before addressing this with the HR department, I wanted to ensure my recollection of the briefing was accurate, so I arranged a meeting with my noncommissioned officer during the Unit Training Assembly to discuss the issue – as thought, I was indeed correct. After the discussion, my NCO recommended that I contact the ESGR office and file a complaint to have the situation mediated.

The ESGR Ombudsman worked with my HR department to resolve my issue in a timely manner, which resulted in the immediate reinstatement of my benefits. Later, I inquired with the HR department on what happened and they admitted that the HR clerk had not received the proper training to handle my unique situation.

Specifically, the HR person handling my file was not aware of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act for military affiliated employees. I had been mistaken as a straight civilian returning from a leave of absence and company policy was that you had to wait until open season to restart benefits.

The majority of the HR departments want to do the right thing for their employees, but may not be trained on all of the different regulations from the federal, state and local governments. Currently there are 180 federal regulations the U.S. Department of Labor administers and enforces and companies with small HR departments struggle to keep up with the different, always changing regulations.

Informing civilian employers on Reserve and Guard working-rights, is where ESGR can help servicemembers best. They are more proactive toward potential issues and work with civilian employers before the problems arise.

It would be beneficial to have an ESGR representative speak with your employer to explain their advocacy role, relating to all matters that pertain to the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act.Their mission is to facilitate and promote a cooperative culture of employer support for National Guard and Reserve service by developing and advocating mutually beneficial initiatives.

With your help, the transition from the military back to civilian life can be made a little easier through open dialogue with servicemembers, employers and ESGR to advocate for both.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Russell S. McMillan

Johnson assumes command of 56th Aerial Port Squadron

U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Russell S. McMillan Col. Timothy McCoy (left), commander, 452nd Mission Support Group, March Air Reserve Base, passes the guidon to Maj. Mark E. Johnson, commander, 56th Aerial Port Squadron, ...
 
 

Compare TRICARE Online and MiCare

TRICARE Online and MiCare Secure Messaging may seem to offer the same services, but there are important differences to these software tools, designed to enhance access to care for all military beneficiaries. “Both programs are endorsed by the Military Health System, and although they may seem very similar, in actuality there are a few differences,”...
 
 
Courtesy photo/Mathieu Beaulieu

Share your paranormal stories with us

Courtesy photo/Mathieu Beaulieu These two “apparitions” were captured in 2013, with an infra-red video camera, during the early-morning hours, in a dark room that used to serve as a hospital morgue in a building on March Ai...
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo illustration by Staff Sgt. Adam C. Borgman)

It’s never too late to restart

(U.S. Air Force photo illustration by Staff Sgt. Adam C. Borgman) Senior Airman Christine Fannin, 927th Force Support Squadron, reflects on her life after leaving the Active Duty Air Force component. Throughout her 12-year brea...
 
 

VA launches new no-cost training programs

Programs Designed to Help Transitioning Servicemembers and Veterans Develop New Skills and Credentials (www.va.gov) WASHINGTON –  The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) August 5 launched two new no-cost training programs, Accelerated Learning Programs (ALPs) and VA Learning Hubs, to help transitioning Servicemembers and Veterans from all eras learn skills, earn credentials, and advance in c...
 
 
Untitled-1

AF Surgeon General message to the Air Force Medical Service

I am deeply honored to serve the Airmen and families of the world’s best Air Force as the 22nd Air Force Surgeon General. I could not be more proud of the outstanding medical professionals with whom I serve–officers, e...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>