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impossibru 08-17-2012 9:02 AM

Guard/Reserve - How's balancing work/reserve time?
Howdy all,

Just got back into California, separating from Active Duty to USAFR.

For those of you who are Guard/Reserve, how has life been balancing both civilian employment and weekend/two week drill time? How have your employers responded?

Also, on the few interviews I've gotten, unless they ask I haven't been telling them I'm in the Reserves (I did tell one that did ask, never heard from them again). Do employers discriminate much in your experiences?

Thanks for reading and replying.

chris 08-17-2012 12:51 PM

i have to say some employers are cool with it. with that said you must do your part in informing your employer that you have to attend drill and AT well in advance and any changes that will come up they always do. the are required by USERRA if i spelled that correctly to give you time off. they are however not required to pay you.

it does get hard though taking off from work. it can be done. all depends on your job really and what you do. if you work only mon thru fri then weekends are no problem. if you work say retail and your hours are all over the place. inform your employer.

it is against federal law to be discriminated for being in the Reserves or Guard. but an employer will not tell you outright. but you can tell when they do. it has been done to me many times. when Iraq was going off i could'nt find a job to save my life. so i work for the Army as a civilian and we are all Reservists and most have been deployed once or twice. so no issues at my job.

good luck to you i hope this may help. there are more here who may know more than i do.

guitar-nut 08-17-2012 1:05 PM

My boss has been very cool with it (even enthusiastic) and very accommodating. But I was already employed by him before joining and he's had an employee in the Guard before, plus he owns the business as opposed to it being some retail giant. I know the Guard has some programs in place to help Guardsmen find jobs, but I can't personally attest to their success or quality.

6114DAVE 08-21-2012 8:46 PM

Depends on the company, my company is composed of 75% veterans actually ( aerospace ) so they are all for it. They even pay for the salary difference.. I make way more as a civi. I'm lucky I guess.

BrianRodela 08-22-2012 8:59 AM

The biggest thing I think that makes a difference is being a good employee. This involves not only good performance and attendance at work but good two way communication. As a SEL, I have been involved in 10 issues with reserve attendance by my sailors. 9 of them were simply a lack of knowledge by the employer and not much input by the Sailor to work through the issues. The single case left involved an employer who was more or less in a business where he didn't want to let the Sailor go as he was the only employee and the business would suffer. Although the law is on our side, one of the responsibilities of being a Senior Enlisted Leader is to maximize performance of our service members and that may be understanding that our reserve paycheck isn't what puts food on the table; it's their regular careers. Having the ability to be flexible with Service members schedules and drills can be beneficial, although may not be possible in every case. The key is to keep the lines of communications open between your command and your employer.

Punisher 09-30-2012 6:57 PM

Once you get the job, the employer will have to let you go to duty. Whether they do it willingly and with enthusiasm or begrudgingly and with resentment; well that depends on the job you get.

Keep in mind your reserve unit will likely make accomodations for your civilian employment and college requirements; where if you have to reschedule your reserve weekend now and then, it shouldn't be an issue.

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