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  • Law Enforcement and the Military Reserves/National Guard

    Good morning,

    I apologize if this is the wrong place to post this. I was wondering if anyone could share their experiences working as a Law Enforcement Officer while simultaneously serving in the military reserves or National Guard.

    I leave the Marine Corps this week after 10 1/2 years of service, and am in the process of being hired by a large Police Department in Texas. I have every intention of continuing my service in the reserves (provided my package is approved) and my reserve unit is a short drive away from where I plan to live and work.

    The Department itself seems to be very reserve-friendly. I was curious if anyone on this board had any advice about balancing these commitment, choosing medical plans (department vs tricare), or any other related issues. I have definitely done my research on all of these topics, but I figured it wouldn't be a bad idea to post this on here and see if anyone had any information that I've completely overlooked.

    Thanks!

  • #2
    First of all, thank you for your commitment to serve this great nation. There are quite a few threads on this general topic, but I couldn't find any specific to the things you are asking about. My information is a bit dated, I did four years active and five and one half in the Reserves but have been out completely since 2005.

    My agency was very friendly toward the Reserves; they worked with the scheduling conflicts and such. The agency even allowed me to do extra annual trainings when needed. I did my regular drills and then went for up to four two-week at's a year. I was never deployed as a reservist.

    At the time I was in, Tri-Care wasn't an option as a reservist; that ended upon my ETS, so I can't help you there either.

    “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.”

    Miyamoto Musashi

    “Life Is Hard, But It's Harder When You're Stupid”

    George V. Higgins (from The Friends of Eddie Coyle)

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    • #3
      For what its worth - I did 8 Years Marine Corps and Marine Corps Reserve. Crossed to a different service and continue to do my monthly Drill's / UTAs as a reservist - and work as a full time police officer. I work at a very friendly military department (probably 80% are current or former), that pays me "military leave" and "military pay differential" while im gone playing military.

      I use Tricare Reserve Select - because you are gonna be hard pressed to find insurance cheaper and better at $205.00 bucks a month for a family - with a max $1000 out of pocket per year. I save thousands of dollars are year just on this - while getting paid by the military and the PD at the same time.

      My department also lets me schedule adjust - so that my hours prior to my Drill weekends are not as bad (ie. Work a day shift vs. a swing or mid shift so I can get my 8 hours of sleep before my drill weekend). Feel free to shoot me any specific questions. Also - don't forget you can use your 9/11 Gi Bill during training - and that's potentially an extra $1000+ a month while doing on the job training and academy training. Good luck. Semper Fi.

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      • #4
        Thanks alot for all of the information. I am definitely leaning towards using tricare over the Police Department medical plan, as it is definitely the cheaper option. Whitty, are there any stipulations if you are injured on duty with your law enforcement job? I wouldn't think there would be, but I was just curious if most Department medical plans have any special caveats to cover injury in the line of duty that Tricare would not cover.

        I'm pretty fortunate in that I know a few guys working at the I&I staff for my reserve unit, and it seems like I will be able to front load off all my drill time at once before the Police Academy starts which will keep me from having to go to drill or be excused while I'm attending the Academy.

        I definitely plan to use the Post 9/11 GI Bill while in the Academy and during field training. The extra cash will certainly come in handy, and I already have my BA.

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        • #5
          Workers comp is seperate from the med plan so no problems..

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          • #6
            Ok great, thanks! 1 last question... Any negative aspects of being in the reserves while in law enforcement, or have you met any resistance from other officers/superiors? Just wondering if most are supportive or if anyone you have encountered has been against it.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by jr03 View Post
              Ok great, thanks! 1 last question... Any negative aspects of being in the reserves while in law enforcement, or have you met any resistance from other officers/superiors? Just wondering if most are supportive or if anyone you have encountered has been against it.
              I went to work for the sheriff's office exactly thirty hours after I came off active duty; the ink wasn't even dry on my DD-214. I joined a reserve unit a few weeks later and started drilling. As a preemptive move, I nominated my boss for the ESGR (Employers in Support of Guard and Reserves) award, and he thought that it was just an awesome thing. I never had a minutes problem with my schedule; not that I would have had one any way, but when you put the boss in the loop, they feel more like a part of it. Not to mention the positive publicity.



              “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.”

              Miyamoto Musashi

              “Life Is Hard, But It's Harder When You're Stupid”

              George V. Higgins (from The Friends of Eddie Coyle)

              Comment

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