National Guard Pay Characterized Unfairly by Media

Both media and Pentagon lead to misperception.

By US Daily Review Staff.

The National Guard Association of the United States this week is fighting back against a perception generated by the media and founded in Department of Defense Research.  The organization has released a statement by retired Maj. Gen. Gus L. Hargett Jr., the association president on the media generated controversy:

“Last month’s report of the Defense Department’s 11th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation, and subsequent media coverage, paints a false picture of National Guard service and compensation.

General Combats Media Created Controversy

“The QRMC report correctly states that Guardsmen receive four days of military pay for a two-day, weekend training assembly, and that this compensation is more than an active-duty service member receives for two days of duty.

“But the report fails to recognize that Guard service is a part-time job that requires more than a part-time commitment.

“Most Guardsmen put in more than two days a month. They have to in order to be professional, physically fit soldiers and airmen. And most officers and noncommissioned officers spend time almost every day on Guard matters. They have to in order to take care of their personnel and to ensure their units meet the same standards as active-component outfits.

“This service beyond drill weekends comes with no added compensation and at the expense of family and civilian careers. So, in reality, it’s often four days of pay for the equivalent of seven or eight full days of service and to be ready to respond at a moment’s notice to a multitude of state and national emergencies.

“In addition, drill pay includes none of the allowances for housing and subsistence that those on active duty enjoy. And while Guardsmen must maintain medical readiness, they must pay for their own medical coverage. They also receive no paid leave.

“The QRMC was right in calling for reforms to the decades-old Guard and Reserve compensation systems. This is long overdue. The report includes some great ideas, including an early retirement program, and is a good starting point for further discussion.

“But the recommendation to cut drill pay to streamline compensation systems is a failure to understand the fundamental realities of Guard service.”

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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