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Can a Soldier be Placed on the Duty Roster if they have an Approved Pass?

I have a soldier that had his pass submitted 2 weeks ago and approved last week. Now, 3 days before his pass starts, he is being told he has to pull duty over the weekend. His flight fares and hotel are non refundable. Can he be required to pull duty with an approved pass?

Bottom line

The Soldier should be considered exempt from duty, IAW AR 600-8-10 paragraph 5-29i

Discussion

If the Soldier is on a Special Pass, that includes at least one duty day, then they are exempt from duty during the approved special pass.

The regulation is not specifically clear on the issue, however, AR 600-8-10, para 5-29i, when referring to a 3 or 4 day special pass states, “A Soldier is in an available-for-duty status when he or she returns from special pass.” This is indicative that they are not available for duty during the authorized pass.

Since the leave and pass program is a commander’s program, this issue is best handled on the 1SG/CDR open door policy and should that fail the Soldier should consider taking the matter to the Battalion CSM/CDR and as a last resort to the IG.

Before approaching the 1SG/CDR on open door policy the Soldier should have all their facts, be able to provide proof of their factual statements and attack the problem in a calm, professional, and factual matter.

For example the Soldier should have:

  • The date the pass was requested
  • The date the pass was approved
  • The date the tickets were paid for
  • The date in which they were told they would have to pull duty.
  • Consider asking the chain of command for empathy and compassion
  • Consider asking the chain of command how would they feel if they were in this position
  • You might want to state something like “I followed all the rules and requirements to ensure I could purchase the tickets and go on pass.”

Where is the platoon sergeant and platoon leader in this issue? They should be addressing the issue with the 1SG and the Commander.

Extract of AR 600-8-10

Paragraph 5-29i:  A Soldier is in an available-for-duty status when he or she returns from special pass.

Special Thanks to our Legal SME ECK for his input on this post!

I hope you found this information useful?!

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posted on 03/09/2018 under Q&A
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Mark is a Retired Command Sergeant Major with 26 years of military leadership experience. He held 3 military occupational specialties (Field Artillery, Nuclear Weapons Tech, and Ammunition Ordnance). Mark is one of the leading military authors in the fields of leadership, counseling, and training..

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