Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve is a Department of Defense agency whose primary responsibility is to promote cooperation and understanding between Reserve Component service members and their civilian employers. ESGR representatives and volunteers provide regular training opportunities for Marines to understand their rights and responsibilities under the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-employment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA). They also work closely with local employers to assist in the resolution of conflicts arising from an employee's military commitment. ESGR support is available through the chain of command – per Force Order 5000-138.1 – and a network of more than 4,700 civilian volunteers and support staff in every state, the District of Columbia, Guam-CNMI (Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands), Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
To help service members better understand USERRA, ESGR has partnered with the Department of Labor to create a list of frequently asked questions. These FAQs may help eliminate some of the problems that arise when military orders activate a Reserve service member. Answers to questions like, “Does USERRA protect against discrimination in initial hiring decisions?” and “What is the employee’s status with his or her civilian employer while performing military service?” may help Marines navigate misunderstanding on their own or with the help of an ESGR Ombudsman. The full list of questions is here http://www.esgr.mil/USERRA/Frequently-Asked-Questions.aspx
Within Marine Forces Reserve, your support network is governed by Force Order 5000-138.1, Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Program. Per the Order, there is a Marine in your unit who can guide you through the civilian employment process – from hiring to USERRA trouble-shooting. They won’t do the work for you, but they will provide educated and experienced guidance when you need it. If you don’t know who your unit ESGR representative is, send your questions directly to ESGR here http://www.esgr.mil/USERRA/USERRA-Contact.aspx.
If you don’t get a reply in a reasonable time, contact the ESGR Marine Forces Reserve Component Liaison, Belinda Blue Loton, at (504) 697-8198 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org