National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve
EMPLOYERS OR POTENTIAL EMPLOYERS OF MEMBERS OF THE GUARD OR RESERVES:
If you are a current or prospective employer of a service member, please contact ESGR.
The National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) is a Department of Defense (DoD) agency that promotes public and private understanding of the National Guard and Reserves in order to gain employer and community support. ESGR is comprised of a community-based volunteer network of over 4,500 members, who serve on 54 committees (in every state, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands), implementing employer support programs within their local communities.
This is an essential service provided to those individuals who serve in either the National Guard or in the Reserve component of all branches of the Military and to employers of these service members. Nationally this is critical because in both manpower and force capability, the Reserve Components comprise nearly half of the total armed forces. Because of today’s highly volatile world and our Nation’s need to be able to respond on short notice to hot spots around the world, it is likely that Reserve Forces will spend more time away from the workplace defending our nation, supporting a demanding operations tempo and training to maintain their mission readiness. On the local level, Governors are calling on Guard units to assist during emergencies like floods, fires, tornados, and blizzards.
ESGR programs and services are focused in three areas; employer outreach, military outreach and overlapping both of these areas, ombudsman services.
Employer outreach is accomplished through education and recognition. The education activities are aimed at informing current and potential employers about the missions that Reserve and National Guard units are training for or are currently preforming. Educational activities take the form of Bosslifts and Briefings with the Boss. Bosslifts transport employers and supervisors to military training sites where they observe National Guard and Reserve members on duty as part of the Total Force. This provides the employer a better understanding of what their Reservists do when they are away from their civilian occupation for duty with their military units. Briefings with the Boss provide an informal forum in which employers, unit commanders, ESGR members, and community leaders meet to network and discuss issues that may arise from employee participation in the National Guard and Reserve.
Military outreach provides direct assistance to members of the Reserve Components at their units during inactive duty training, and during mobilization and demobilization processing. This outreach informs the service member of his or her rights and responsibilities under Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA.) It also addresses questions and concerns that the Reservist may have about mobilization and its impact on their civilian employment.
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act USERRA was passed by U.S. Congress and signed into law by U.S. President Bill Clinton on October 13, 1994 to protect the civilian employment of active and reserve military personnel in the United States called to active duty. The law applies to all United States uniformed services and their respective reserve components.
The Ombudsman Services Program provides information, informal mediation, and referral service to resolve employer conflicts. ESGR volunteers and the Ombudsmen of the national staff are available to promptly respond to inquiries and conflicts presented by employees or employers. ESGR is not an enforcement agency and does not offer legal counsel or advice. However, many employer-employee conflicts can be resolved without referral to the courts or to the Department of Labor for formal investigation.
ESGR maintains a web page of information concerning all of its programs and activities at http://www.esgr.mil. The national website contains information of interest to employers, Reservists, and committee members about ESGR programs and activities and USERRA. The website also lists ESGR fact sheets, the Federal statute (USERRA), the current ESGR public service advertisement, and various links to other web sites.
If your organization employs Guardsmen or Reservist, or if your organization is interested in learning more about the advantages of employing service members, please email or call Darell Zimbelman ([email protected] – 970-204-0723) or Mike Bennett ([email protected] – 970-481-8857).