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Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Reserve Guidance

What you need to know

  • Reservists must still report for Active Duty for Training (ADT) and Inactive Duty for Training (IDT). Failure to report without prior authorization will be viewed as an unexcused absence.
  • Commands are encouraged to cancel, reschedule, or identify alternative training methods in lieu of in-person training.
  • Reservists not on active duty are strongly encouraged against foreign travel.
  • If you develop COVID-19 or flu-like symptoms prior to duty or are diagnosed with COVID-19, you must notify your command immediately and update your status in CG Personnel Accountability and Assessment System (CGPAAS) IAW FAQ, F18 below.
  • October weigh-ins/body composition screening have resumed.

Resources

Reserve FAQs

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F1 Q: Do I still need to perform Active Duty for Training (ADT) and Inactive Duty for Training (IDT)?

A: Yes. Reservists must still report for ADT and IDT as directed by cognizant authority to maintain mobilization readiness. Failure to report for duty without prior authorization will be viewed as an unexcused absence. Drills marked as “unexcused” may not be rescheduled for a later date. However, commands are encouraged to provide their reservists with maximum flexibility, while balancing operational readiness with exposure risk. Communicate with your supervisor to determine if your training can be rescheduled, completed remotely, or shifted to another location. Commands may give special consideration to reservists who travel from outside of the reasonable commuting distance to their units. However, if you are ordered to report for duty by a cognizant authority, you must do so.

 

F5 Q: What impact will excusing or rescheduling ADT or IDT due to COVID-19 have on my ability to earn a “good year” for retirement?

A: Reservists can normally avoid a “bad year” for retirement by remaining aware of their point status and taking consistent action throughout the year to meet anniversary requirements. That said, these are not normal times. Members must reschedule ADT/IDT if they have an active case of or are experiencing flu or COVID-19 like symptoms. Commands need to make every reasonable effort to reschedule duty within the member’s anniversary year window when possible. Members who are unable to perform duty can earn retirement points via Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL).The complete EBDL Course List and information can be found here: https://www.reserve.uscg.mil/Resources/CG131/CG1311/Training/EBDL/. Further, the legislative process may bring relief to personnel at risk of a “bad year” due to COVID-19.  Both House and Senate versions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY21 included a reprieve to allow the Secretary of Defense and Homeland Security to provide up to 35 points to a reservist who was already on track for a good retirement year.  More information to follow.  View the NDAA here: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/4049/ 

 

F11 Q: As a Command how do I hold reservists accountable to the “90% rule” if I excuse IDT drills?

A: Reservists are required to complete 90% of scheduled drills, which is normally 48 drills in a fiscal year. Commands may excuse the performance of IDT drills, reducing the number of drills used in determining satisfactory participation. For example, if the command excuses four drills the satisfactory participation calculation would be 90% of 44 scheduled drills as opposed to the normal 48. Excused drills may be rescheduled at a later date.
 

F14 Q: What should Commands do to minimize a reservist COVID-19 risk while on ADT or IDT? 

A: Commands are highly encouraged to communicate with their reservists prior to scheduled travel or reporting to determine if reservists are sick, have been exposed to COVID-19, or live in a location with sustained community transmission.  Local COVID-19 guidelines for travel and activities must always be followed.  SELRES members experiencing flu or COVID-19 like symptoms (fever, chills, nausea/ vomiting, shortness of breath/trouble breathing, etc.), need to work with their Command to reschedule duty rather than reporting if feeling ill. Commands have the authority to excuse or reschedule reserve training, are encouraged to give maximum flexibility, and should balance operational readiness with exposure risk.  And of course, personnel must wash hands often, wear a mask, and keep social distance.

 

F15 Q: As a Command, what if we have a reservist who may have been exposed to or who starts exhibiting symptoms for COVID-19 while performing ADT or IDT (including while traveling to/from) duty?

A: First and foremost, direct the member to call their primary care provider who will assess symptoms and advise them. Not unlike an injury or illness incurred while in a qualifying duty status, if symptoms/exposure happened while in a qualifying duty status, the member may qualify for Reserve Incapacitation Benefits. Commands must conduct a Line of Duty investigation to determine and document member exposure. The Reserve Policy Manual COMDTINST M1001.28 (series), Chapter 6 para. F, and the Administrative Investigations Manual COMDTINST M5830.1 (series), Chapter 7, provide guidance on procedures to follow for both commands and reservists.  Reservists who are experiencing flu or COVID-19 like symptoms must work with their Command to reschedule ADT/IDT and not report if ill. 

 

F18 Q. What should I do if I become COVID-19 positive?  ​

A. Notify your command and update CG Personnel Accountability and Assessment System (CGPAAS) at https://cgpaas.uscg.mil/  immediately/ASAP. In accordance with ALCOAST 174/20, CGPAAS is the official means to most accurately report and track personnel status during this dynamic time; it has been modified to include a module and categories specific to COVID-19. Personnel can report their status through the CGPAAS website without being connected to the CG network and without their CAC card. Reserve personnel on active duty orders shall report both personal and work statuses and update the status as appropriate. Reserve personnel in a drilling status are encouraged to report personal status. All changes to personal or work status must be updated in CGPAAS by the member or unit CGPAAS Commanding Officer Representative (COR).

 

F19 Q: Will DXRs make special provisions to procure IDT berthing for SELRES members (who are authorized IDT berthing at this permanent duty station) approved to perform IDT at an alternate location more than 50 miles from home?

A. DXRs may extend the current policy regarding IDT berthing to members, currently authorized IDT berthing at their home unit, to allow the use of IDT berthing at alternate drill locations. However, the same policy guidance contained in COMDTINST M1001.28C, Chapter 2 remains in effect, and will be applied from the member’s permanent residence to the alternate IDT location. Reservists should work with their commands to submit an alternate worksite memo, and contact the temporary unit’s DXR to work out berthing needs.

 

F20 Q. What is the policy on reservists drilling via telework?

A: The purpose of inactive duty training (IDT) drills is to provide individual mobilization and unit readiness training. Commands are authorized to consider alternative means for reservists to perform duties until the crisis has passed, including use of alternate training methods to accomplish common training requirements in lieu of drill at the primary place of duty.

This could include non-traditional delivery of training (e.g. reserve service wide exam preparation via videoconference) or other readiness training that can be executed remotely. As always, Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL) classes are available for non-pay credit. Under these unprecedented circumstances and only during the COVID-19 pandemic, commands are authorized to allow Reservists to use non-traditional training techniques to ensure readiness and preserve the health of our Reserve workforce. Paid drills must still meet the duty requirements of Chapter 2 of the Reserve Policy Manual, COMDTINST M1001.28C.

 

F21 Q: What are other ways to perform duty or earn retirement points outside of IDT and ADT-AT?

A: There are several ways to earn retirement points, including Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL). Members and units should consult COMDTINST M1001.28C, 8L to learn about command-directed and elective courses that can provide retirement points upon completion. In limited cases, IDT pay may be awarded but commands must abide by strict rules prior to members being authorized pay. Review the Reserve Policy Manual and https://www.reserve.uscg.mil/Resources/CG131/CG1311/Training/EBDL/ for more information.

 

F24 Q: In the event of an activation, what if my family care plan won’t work because either my caregiver is high-risk or can’t arrive?

A: Due to the fluid nature of the event, these situations will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Members should ensure their commands and unit ombudsman are aware of individual circumstances, and whether additional local resources are required. Commands should remain sensitive to the needs of their Coast Guard families. 

 

F26 Q: If I’m recalled, how much notice will I get?

A: Normally, for recalls of 180 days or more under 10 USC 12302, there is a 30-day notification requirement; however, the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security has waived this requirement. The Areas and DOL are trying to provide at least seven days advanced notice prior to activation provided operational needs support this. For more information see ALCOAST 128/20.

 

F27 Q: Which members will be recalled?

A: As requirements evolve, certain skillsets will be recalled as commands request reserve support through Direct Access Mobilization Module (DA MOB). Commands are requested to source personnel locally, if possible, to minimize exposure to COVID-19 due to travel. 

 

F28 Q: Are medical/dental screenings required for this activation?

A: In-person medical screenings are only required if service members are deploying outside of the United States, or deploying to a Department of Defense Combatant Command (COCOM). 

All members being activated will be asked a series of prescreening medical questions to address unit and personal risk factors. These questions, referenced in ALCOAST 128/20, can be found at the CG-R page on CG Portal. A “red” PHA is not indicative of a member’s ability to deploy; as per ALCOAST 104/20, the period of validity for PHAs are extended for 120 days.

 

F29 Q: Our Reserve unit has been working hard to establish training programs to provide alternate drill site training for our members, how do I know if it will be approved? *Updated 4/28/2020*

A: All training must be command endorsed, in the spirit of ALCOAST 150/20, and in accordance with the guidelines set forth in the Reserve Policy Manual. If these conditions are met, drills will be approved and processed for payment. See ALCOAST 086/20 and ALCOAST 150/20 for more details.

 

F30 Q: What is the approval process for Inactive Duty Training (IDT) and Active Duty for Training-Annual Training (ADT-AT) drills performed under this guidance? *Updated 4/28/2020*

A: The Inactive Duty Training (IDT) and Active Duty for Training-Annual Training (ADT-AT) drills performed under these guidelines should be approved in the same method as done previously. Commands shall work with their members to ensure that the drills were performed in accordance with the guidance provided in ALCOAST 150/20. As per this same ALCOAST, the decision to authorize remote drilling must be documented in the notes section when submitting an IDT drill in Direct Access to include the location authorized.

 

F31 Q: Can Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL) be completed on the same day as an Inactive Duty for Training (IDT) drill? *Updated 4/28/2020*

A: Yes. Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL) courses may be completed during Inactive Duty Training (IDT) drill; however, if EBDL is completed on the same day as IDT or Active Duty for Training (ADT), only points associated with that duty can be credited. The designated course points cannot be applied in addition to points earned for duty in the same period. Therefore, members cannot be in a duty status when they finish the course online to receive the designated course values. For more information, reference ALCOAST 150/20.

 

F32 Q: What are some other resources for training? *Updated 4/28/2020*

A: In addition to General Mandated Training (GMT), there are numerous learning opportunities through Learning Management System (LMS): https://elearning.uscg.mil. There are also opportunities through other government agencies for distance-learning courses that directly support Maritime Homeland Security, National Defense, and Disaster Response and Recovery. This information can also be obtained online or through the Electronic Based Distance Learning (EBDL) contacts listed above. Prior to pursuing any of these opportunities, members must gain command approval of their training plan.

 

F34 Q: If I’m performing training activities remotely, what are examples of measurable products? *Updated 4/28/2020*

A: Measurable products can include, but are not limited to, progress or completion of a PQS, progress towards a unit required competency, evaluations/marks, notes from a teleconference or training session, study guide for Servicewide Examinations (SWE) or qualification, completion or drafting of unit instructions in whole or part, and conducting single officer investigations resulting in findings, administrative tasks required by Reserve management, and large-scale training such as Civil Rights Training. For more information, reference ALCOAST 150/20.

 

F35 Q. Can I perform my Active Duty for Training-Annual Training (ADT-AT) at home?

A. It’s not likely, but permission may be granted on a case-by-case basis by each District's DXR shop. Active Duty for Annual Training (ADT-AT) is the longest dedicated training period each year, and it should be used to gain hands-on operational experience or access to longer courses/classroom activities, ensuring you are ready to mobilize for contingencies.

Whenever possible, you should perform ADT-AT at the home unit. In order to achieve this safely, units may space out training to adhere to social distancing requirements. Units may also postpone ADT until later in the fiscal year when restrictions are eased.

Most ADT-AT cannot be performed remotely, but there are a limited number of exceptions where required readiness training may be conducted through alternative means, and at locations other than the normal unit location - including the member’s residence or at another unit, provided both commands agree and receive DXR approval. Tasks assigned by the command MUST be directly related to the member’s position, rating, or competency, and the training MUST result in a measurable product.

 

F36 Q. What impact will excusing or rescheduling ADT or IDT have on my ability to earn the 70 points required to be eligible for the Reserve Good Conduct Medal?

A. ALCOAST 358/20 announces a temporary policy change to modify eligibility requirements for the Reserve Good Conduct Medal (RGCM).Effective 01 March 2020 until a date to be determined, paragraph 5.A.2.a.(2) in the Coast Guard Medals and Awards Manual, COMDTINST M1650.2E, is temporarily modified to reduce the requirements for a qualifying year from 70 to 50 points. The requirement to apply the standard in place at the beginning of the anniversary year does not apply to this temporary reduction in points.

Questions regarding the Reserve Good Conduct Medal should be directed to CG PSC-PSD-ma at: ARL.Medals@uscg.mil.

 

F37 Q. I travel from outside RCD to drill.  Is double berthing being enforced during the pandemic?

A.  No.  For the duration of the pandemic (or until otherwise indicated) single occupancy berthing is authorized and will be funded.  Members conducting IDT at their normal drilling location who are eligible to receive berthing are granted an exception to berthing policy contained in chapter 2.G.3. of the Reserve Policy Manual, COMDTINST M1001.28 (series).

 

F38 Q. Are “weigh-ins” still required during the pandemic?

A. Yes.  Semi-annual “weigh-ins,” now referred to as Body Composition Screenings, have resumed as of 01 October 2020 for all military members.  FAQs and specific SELRES guidance can be found here:  https://www.dcms.uscg.mil/Portals/10/CG-1/cg133/pdf/Body_Comp_FAQs_Sept_2020.pdf?ver=xu1jlg13QWRUXTcl7xTDog%3d%3d.

General and policy questions regarding the Body Composition Program should be sent to HQS-SMB-BodyCompPolicy@uscg.mil.

 

F39 Q. I have been mobilized in support of COVID-19, can my orders be extended?

A. Maybe.  In accordance with ALCOAST 363/20, Reserve mobilization policy is updated to allow orders to be issued for up to 365 days.  Existing orders may be amended to bring the total duration to 365 days.  Extension requests beyond 180 days must be approved through appropriate authority (PAC/LANT/DOL) and may take additional time to process. This change will better meet the needs of operational and mission support field commanders as well as the needs of individual reservists. Orders extensions should be pursued early to ensure uninterrupted benefits and entitlements.

 

Contact your District DXR for more information.