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InvalidZip  
#1 Posted : Friday, January 10, 2020 10:55:25 PM(UTC)
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I am a Full-Time Regular that is considering joining the military. If I join the military (specifically the Air Force) what would happen to my job with the Postal Service? I'm hoping that I will be able to maintain my job (as a career employee) and continue to accrue seniority, pay raises, annual leave, sick leave, etc. Please let me know how this works. I'm very interested in serving my country as an airman/soldier/sailor etc.
Your NBA  
#2 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 7:12:08 AM(UTC)
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I believe it may depend on whether you join the Reserves or go full time. I am sure lots of people will know the details, but you could find info in the contract, USERRA, and general googling. There was an article on postalmag about a guy who is fighting the USPS over military service. He was a clerk who worked a few days a couple decades ago. Depending on your plans, there might be relevant info in his story.

The people I know who are in the military and post office are in the reserves. I assumed leaving full time is quitting, but I really don't know. It just makes sense that the USPS should not be standing at the altar. Having it both ways does not seem reasonable or fair. I think some postal workers view the military games in which they engage as a break from the danger of the USPS.
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USPSPOW1 on 1/12/2020(UTC)
InvalidZip  
#3 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 8:49:55 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Hannah Blector Go to Quoted Post
I believe it may depend on whether you join the Reserves or go full time. I am sure lots of people will know the details, but you could find info in the contract, USERRA, and general googling. There was an article on postalmag about a guy who is fighting the USPS over military service. He was a clerk who worked a few days a couple decades ago. Depending on your plans, there might be relevant info in his story.

The people I know who are in the military and post office are in the reserves. I assumed leaving full time is quitting, but I really don't know. It just makes sense that the USPS should not be standing at the altar. Having it both ways does not seem reasonable or fair. I think some postal workers view the military games in which they engage as a break from the danger of the USPS.


So being in the reserves is a "military game" and a break from the "dangers of the postal service"? Uhh... Yikes. I disagree with your assessment. 😒


I have been googling, but I haven't been able to find anything about joining the military full time when you're already employed as a FTR. I did read that USERRA doesn't protect employment when you already have a job and join the military full-time, because it's essentially considered switching jobs. If I work for Apple and enlist in the military full-time I don't get to keep my Apple job, yet does this same rule apply to the federal agency USPS?
WorkingTitle3484  
#4 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 9:56:35 AM(UTC)
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Please remember you can't work any other job full-time while working for the PO full-time.

You can work for the PO full-time and military reserves if you were hired as active-duty military reservist.

Unless you've got a family member up the chain, I think you're SOL when it comes to leaving the PO to begin initial military service while retaining your postal career.

Contact HR and NBA for more info.
Take each day one step at a time.
Your NBA  
#5 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 11:00:51 AM(UTC)
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I think some postal workers view the military games in which they engage as a break from the danger of the USPS.

"A military exercise or war game is the employment of military resources in training for military operations, either exploring the effects of warfare or testing strategies without actual combat." Just something I googled for your edification.

I don't know why a common military term would offend anyone interested in joining the military. Maybe google basic training, also, before taking the leap. I was never in the military, but close relatives (including a gun nut) tell me it is not for everyone.

Also, I guarantee some of the treatment I have witnessed in the USPS would not be tolerated in the military. And if some managers knew what some of their mistreated workers have told me, they might think it best to seek a transfer. And that includes someone I know who takes off for military stuff. And some of us employees have laughed about him and others wanting a safer environment so they did military stuff.

Full disclosure: I was raised by a WWII vet (who used a belt for more than one purpose) and I was screamed at in 2nd grade by a quite large former drill sergeant employed by my school. So I know the military is not for people who want to be coddled. Also, I have found that the managers who scream at employees like they are privates are the easiest to overcome due to their small brains, fragile egos, and lack of KSAs.

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USPSPOW1 on 1/12/2020(UTC)
MPE2009  
#6 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 12:16:44 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: WorkingTitle3484 Go to Quoted Post
Please remember you can't work any other job full-time while working for the PO full-time.

You can work for the PO full-time and military reserves if you were hired as active-duty military reservist.

Unless you've got a family member up the chain, I think you're SOL when it comes to leaving the PO to begin initial military service while retaining your postal career.

Contact HR and NBA for more info.


You can join the reserves or guard while employed with the USPS. There's also a five year limit on the amount of time you can serve away from the post office while in the guard or reserves, with a list of exceptions that revolve around a national mobilization, presidential orders etc. But I don't know if that holds true for somebody enlisting into the regular armed forces, although I could see that five year rule playing a role. In any case, there'd be no leave accrual, since you can't earn leave in an LWOP status. OP needs to call HR and discuss this with them.
John Henry  
#7 Posted : Saturday, January 11, 2020 2:02:13 PM(UTC)

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We had an Army Guardsman stay on full time duty as a unit training technician after he was called up. That route did remain open for the five years and he retired from the Army. I don't know about rules for or if he also retained the FERS retirement.

But enlisting into the regular forces does seem to be a different situation than being a reservist ordered to duty for an extended time period.
beer30  
#8 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 2:06:23 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: InvalidZip Go to Quoted Post
I am a Full-Time Regular that is considering joining the military. If I join the military (specifically the Air Force) what would happen to my job with the Postal Service? I'm hoping that I will be able to maintain my job (as a career employee) and continue to accrue seniority, pay raises, annual leave, sick leave, etc. Please let me know how this works. I'm very interested in serving my country as an airman/soldier/sailor etc.


I was active duty for over 20 years. I don't know you, but I do know what the military wants/needs and that is commitment, loyalty, selfless-service, and discipline. To be a good soldier/sailer/airman/marine it requires you all the time, not part of the time. That's why they pay you a salary and not by the hour. The culture is very counter to working with the USPS. My recommendation is decide which one is more important to you and quit the other.

Option 2 is join the weekend warriors but don't be disillusioned to think that is anything like active duty. This is for those guys who want to say they served their country while having weekend cook-outs at the local armory and then getting discounts at the waffle house. Don't get me wrong, this is a great opportunity for some. You can get a ton of great benefits, just don't start showing up at the VFW telling stories about being a SEAL sniper and wearing an SF pin in public so people tell you "thanks for your service".

I believe option 2 would allow you to remain committed to the USPS as well. I served with many NG/RES who maintained their regular jobs upon demobilization after a deployment.

Good luck with your decision.

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jwestern309 on 1/12/2020(UTC)
z165012  
#9 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 2:47:29 PM(UTC)
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as others have said, not sure how it works with going active duty...there are companies out there that will continue to pay you while you are put on deployment from a reserves standpoint and get sent somewhere for months, but not sure the post office is one of them...

there are also various age requirements based on the branch you join, so be aware of that...also, there is a variety of ways to go from military into postal, but if you get a retirement from the military, you cant 'buy' those years of service with the post office while collecting, but you can double-dip doing 20 in the military and retiring and starting at the post office and doing whatever amount of years to hit retirement age...

also, if joining the military, look into various state benefits aside from the GI Bill...I know Texas and Wisconsin at least HAD something aside from the GI Bill in terms of school financing, and Illinois at least HAD the best education benefits when I got out, but politicians are always changing policy, so no clue what it is now, as I have been out a number of years...

the GI Bill also has had various changes based on service on 9/11, not sure if that stayed in effect or not, but that change went in sometime after 2010 where the GI Bill paid out 48 installments instead of 36...
chuhouse2003  
#10 Posted : Sunday, January 12, 2020 11:27:13 PM(UTC)
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I am a FTR and am considering to join the Reserve. I wonder how are the leave is being used? Military leave then AL then LWOP?
MPE2009  
#11 Posted : Monday, January 13, 2020 5:22:10 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: chuhouse2003 Go to Quoted Post
I am a FTR and am considering to join the Reserve. I wonder how are the leave is being used? Military leave then AL then LWOP?


Your choice. You'll be advance 120 hours per year to use for military duty.
MPE2009  
#12 Posted : Monday, January 13, 2020 5:25:03 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: beer30 Go to Quoted Post

Option 2 is join the weekend warriors but don't be disillusioned to think that is anything like active duty. This is for those guys who want to say they served their country while having weekend cook-outs at the local armory and then getting discounts at the waffle house.



I'm not sure which NG or reserve unit you're referring to. But I remember all those guys in the Air Guard/National Guard units that were swapping in/out of combat in Iraq & Afghanistan, spending more time in combat zones than most active duty units ever saw. So tell their widows, parents and children how they were just a bunch of weekend warriors.....
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