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DEFENSE COMMUNITIES 360

Federal Employers Ignore Protections for Returning Reservists

  • February 20, 2012
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The federal government in many cases ignores a law designed to protect National Guard and reserve personnel from adverse job actions resulting from their military service, reports the Washington Post.

More than 18 percent of the 1,548 complaints that employers violated the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act in fiscal 2011 involved federal agencies, in most instances for firing service members for their absence or retracting job offers due to a member’s active-duty commitment.

Federal employers often suffer no consequences, as the Labor Department investigations carry no enforcement power and the Justice Department pursues only a small number of cases each year. Advocates for reservists are concerned that the number of violations will rise as more troops return from overseas, according to the story.

Recently, however, DOD, the Veteran Affairs Department and six other agencies formed a task force to boost federal compliance with the statute.

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