Author Topic: JPSU IPSC Problems or Issues (merged)  (Read 60236 times)

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Offline Old Sweat

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #25 on: August 04, 2013, 07:14:00 »
I have shared the article where Barry is quoted on CrackBook encouraging everyone to contact their MPs.

Done!  :salute:

Offline milnews.ca

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #26 on: August 04, 2013, 08:34:31 »
Think I found where they went.

http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,111602.0.html

  >:D
Never thought the post would come in THIS handy!  ;D

Maybe the Army should find some Gonads and demand the Government to care for their troops, with the same vigor they did on denying pips and crowns.....
.... and since the politicians were the only folks wanting to take credit in 2009 for setting the system up (note no quote from anybody in uniform in the news release), maybe the Ministers of National Defence and Veterans Affairs should strap on a pair, too.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 09:29:55 by milnews.ca »
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Offline Humphrey Bogart

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #27 on: August 12, 2013, 07:10:18 »
I know Barry. He's a good man.

Essentially, what is said is true. The JPSU was started with the best of intentions, however some people never really bought into it.
In some instances the JPSU was seen as a dumping ground for undesirable troops who had histories of disciplinary or administrative problems.
It took over six months for a CANFORGEN to be published on how to post a troop to the JPSU, where it should have taken about a week, thanks to the various levels of bureaucracies that had to agree and and their  :2c:.

I am sure there are a few more horror stories.

QFTT!

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #28 on: August 12, 2013, 08:38:19 »
QFTT!

Please translate. Dinosaurus Rex here. Not good with acronyms. Thanks  ;)
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Offline Spectrum

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #29 on: August 12, 2013, 14:01:15 »
It's a new one for me as well, but seeing that I am basically a salaried acronym translator...I'm going to guess:

"Quoted For The Truth"

and an internet search confirms my theory.

cheers

Offline milnews.ca

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #30 on: August 15, 2013, 21:52:49 »
.... since the politicians were the only folks wanting to take credit in 2009 for setting the system up (note no quote from anybody in uniform in the news release), maybe the Ministers of National Defence and Veterans Affairs should strap on a pair, too.
The politicians take the credit, and are happy to "let" the uniformed staff step up if there's a problem - this letter to the editor, signed by the CDS:
Quote
.... Caring for our members and their families is a personal priority, and I take it extremely seriously. More specifically, the CAF leadership team is passionate about ensuring that our personnel who have sacrificed in service to their country receive quality care and support.

The CAF took a tremendous step forward in providing this support when it opened our JPSU in 2009. These JPSUs aim to ensure our ill and injured personnel have proper medical care and leadership, and that support is available and tailored to their needs. While our system continually seeks to improve, it is important to note that success depends largely on an injured member’s commitment and active participation in their recovery.

In recognition of strong Government of Canada and CAF support, the current JPSU budget of $19 million and staff of 350 is being sheltered from reductions despite tightening in other areas.

Currently the JPSU system supports 5400 ill and injured members along with their families. The results have been impressive. From January 2011 to June 2013, 3000 personnel recovered sufficiently to join the Return to Work program, a third of whom returned to full service, with the remainder receiving care, rehabilitation, or support transitioning to civilian life.

Nevertheless, as the Citizen article illustrated, challenges remain. We recognize that the number of members suffering from operational stress injuries will likely continue to increase in the short term. With this in mind, we are working hard to fill vacant public service and military positions to ensure that we have a qualified and experienced professional team in place for our members to depend on.

While we acknowledge that we have not yet reached the optimum solution set, we are striving to fill the gaps to ensure that no one gets left behind on their road to recovery. Providing appropriate resources for this vital support network remains my continuing priority.
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

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Offline Kat Stevens

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #31 on: August 15, 2013, 21:59:44 »
Anything is better than that godawful SPHL system that was around once upon a time, where units couldn't wait to remove the infected flesh and cauterize the wound before it spread.  It truly was like an episode of the walking dead, guys drugged to the eyeballs, stacked up like chord wood in a waiting room the size of a wheelchair accessible restroom stall, and made to come in the base hospital via the back door.
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Offline milnews.ca

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CF 'Budman looking into things
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2013, 21:43:53 »
Good to see even an initial look, although the bit in yellow could allow the government to get off the hook if there's not problems with most or all JPSU IPSC's ("isolated incidents" and all that).
Quote
Canada’s military ombudsman has launched a probe into the national network of support units created almost five years ago to help mentally and physically injured troops.

The probe comes less than a month after the Ottawa Citizen reported that the network of 24 support platoons have deteriorated due to overcrowding, chronic staff shortages, staff burnout and the filling of key positions with unqualified personnel, many of whom are on the eve of retirement.

Ombudsman Pierre Daigle decided to launch a review following the Citizen’s coverage and a specific complaint sent to his office, spokesman Jamie Robertson told the Citizen Monday.

Investigators plan to contact all the units and if they find a pattern of systemic failure, could launch a full-fledged investigation, said Robertson.

“We will be trying to find from the people who work there what is happening on the ground,” said Robertson. “We want to get good information from all levels.” ....
Ottawa Citizen, 26 Aug 13

- corrected based on new info from Ombudsman's office -
« Last Edit: August 28, 2013, 16:23:13 by milnews.ca »
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

Tony Prudori
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Offline krustyrl

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2013, 22:36:45 »
My experience with a certain JPSU/IPSC was less than "supportive. Even my Wing Social Worker could not believe the way some were treated at the Unit. I personally think some at that Unit forgot they were dealing with members who are sick and injured both physically and mentally.

I realize we were still in uniform but were nowheres near accomodating to each members particular issues.
Totally frigged up my Depart with "Dignity" and I use that term loosely. Was considering contacting the WCWO after I was officially out, to see about my flag I was entitled to (after 27+ yrs) but that was the last item on DWD and was not up to facing these IPSC folks again. Eventually got my flag, which was co-incidentally flown on the wrong date and the Sgt i/c admitted he had "dropped the ball" with me and thought I already had the flag.   :facepalm:

note: I dealt with 2 different JPSU/IPSC Units and one was certainly no better than the other.

*rant off*

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #34 on: August 27, 2013, 00:55:43 »
My experience with a certain JPSU/IPSC was less than "supportive. Even my Wing Social Worker could not believe the way some were treated at the Unit. I personally think some at that Unit forgot they were dealing with members who are sick and injured both physically and mentally.

I realize we were still in uniform but were nowheres near accomodating to each members particular issues.
Totally frigged up my Depart with "Dignity" and I use that term loosely. Was considering contacting the WCWO after I was officially out, to see about my flag I was entitled to (after 27+ yrs) but that was the last item on DWD and was not up to facing these IPSC folks again. Eventually got my flag, which was co-incidentally flown on the wrong date and the Sgt i/c admitted he had "dropped the ball" with me and thought I already had the flag.   :facepalm:

note: I dealt with 2 different JPSU/IPSC Units and one was certainly no better than the other.

*rant off*

Which ones were they? PM me please.......
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Offline milnews.ca

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2013, 15:38:19 »
From the CF/DND Ombudsman's Twitter feed:
Quote
The Ombudsman has launched a review of the 34 Integrated Personnel Support Centres located across the country; report in Oct.

Notre Bureau examinera létat de chacun des 34 centres intégrés de soutien du personnel à l'échelle du pays.Rapport au début de l'automne.
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

Tony Prudori
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Offline krustyrl

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2013, 16:18:02 »
 :goodpost:

Good, I have my own opinion on a select couple of "Support" Centres.  I'm curious on the report.

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #37 on: August 28, 2013, 16:35:54 »
:goodpost:

Good, I have my own opinion on a select couple of "Support" Centres.  I'm curious on the report.

You should ensure the Ombudsman has your opinion for his investigation.

It does no one any good if you don't voice it in the proper forum.
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Offline krustyrl

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #38 on: August 28, 2013, 16:50:51 »
Thanks for the prompt Recceguy, I will certainly do that.  Would it be the VA Ombudsman or the DND one.?

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #39 on: August 28, 2013, 16:58:34 »
From the CF/DND Ombudsman's Twitter feed:

I don't think it will be a very positive review. Not everyone bought into this concept.
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Offline Teager

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #40 on: August 28, 2013, 17:16:09 »
Thanks for the prompt Recceguy, I will certainly do that.  Would it be the VA Ombudsman or the DND one.?

It is the DND Ombudsman.

Offline krustyrl

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #41 on: August 28, 2013, 17:28:46 »
Roger that.   Thanks    :salute:

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #42 on: August 30, 2013, 19:11:59 »
So far,
Personally, I have had mixed results.

Problem  -  As a PRes, when completing required paperwork to the best of my understanding, four months ago. Attending the meetings, as I understood them, getting signatures as I thought.......notice NO Guidance from my local JPSU, my unit signed off of my paperwork and off it goes to Ottawa for approval, last month.

Solution  -  After a busy summer, last week I started asking my PRes unit where the approval was and the "deer in the headlights" response was the start of the fight and last minute stress that members should not need to be going through. I spent 7 days scrambling for answers, where if I had of better understood what JPSU does to start with, instead of relying on my Divisional System, I would have reduced panic stations and have better educated my own unit in the long run. I now have approvals, have offended my Div System and JPSU is glowing here for their efforts to meet a member's needs, but the phyric nature required to for JPSU to perform it's job has not built many bridges that were barely existant to start with. I can not stop praising the efforts of my local JPSU worker, he pulled it all together and let me know the few parts I honestly missed. He made it happen, so that Ottawa JPSU could approve my request. Based on my initial request, I would have been denied outright, and my PRes unit would have simply said "so sad".

While the above example admits pros and cons, the message is this is how an "informed PRes" member is challenged to apply and get the appropriate support, as and when needed. How many are lost due to systemic problems that I went through?
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Offline stokerwes

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #43 on: August 31, 2013, 10:28:52 »
So far,
Personally, I have had mixed results.

Problem  -  As a PRes, when completing required paperwork to the best of my understanding, four months ago. Attending the meetings, as I understood them, getting signatures as I thought.......notice NO Guidance from my local JPSU, my unit signed off of my paperwork and off it goes to Ottawa for approval, last month.

Solution  -  After a busy summer, last week I started asking my PRes unit where the approval was and the "deer in the headlights" response was the start of the fight and last minute stress that members should not need to be going through. I spent 7 days scrambling for answers, where if I had of better understood what JPSU does to start with, instead of relying on my Divisional System, I would have reduced panic stations and have better educated my own unit in the long run. I now have approvals, have offended my Div System and JPSU is glowing here for their efforts to meet a member's needs, but the phyric nature required to for JPSU to perform it's job has not built many bridges that were barely existant to start with. I can not stop praising the efforts of my local JPSU worker, he pulled it all together and let me know the few parts I honestly missed. He made it happen, so that Ottawa JPSU could approve my request. Based on my initial request, I would have been denied outright, and my PRes unit would have simply said "so sad".

While the above example admits pros and cons, the message is this is how an "informed PRes" member is challenged to apply and get the appropriate support, as and when needed. How many are lost due to systemic problems that I went through?

I can say that this is not unique to the PRes. I have seen it the RegF many times as well.

Offline stokerwes

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #44 on: September 01, 2013, 15:43:12 »
The JPSU staff are just like every other federal employees, overworked and understaffed. My personal experience has always been good when I have dealt with JPSU. Be it for myself or my subordinates.
Just like all organizations there are good and not so good employees.
There does need to be more funding and more employees along with some retooling of the JPSU to improve it. More pers should be made  aware of the services they offer.
I had no idea what they offered until I required their services, this was my own fault for not educating myself sooner. But it should be a component of PD days, refresher training, indoctrination lectures etc.. the more people that know about it the better.

« Last Edit: September 01, 2013, 15:50:25 by stokerwes »

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #45 on: September 01, 2013, 20:58:11 »
If I may weigh I here the right people have to staff the JPSU and the IPSCs. Sometimes we don't get it right.

Personnel that work in an IPSC often have to be the "shoulder to cry on"' , the one who has to kick butt, and break down barriers to ensure the soldiers assigned to their care are cared for properly and within regulations.

This is hard enough to do for healthy soldiers. Is exponentially difficult for the ill and injured, as many of our brethren are still woefully uninformed and educated.
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Re: JPSU
« Reply #46 on: October 31, 2013, 21:42:16 »
From the CF/DND Ombudsman's Twitter feed:
Quote
The Ombudsman has launched a review of the 34 Integrated Personnel Support Centres located across the country; report in Oct.

Notre Bureau examinera létat de chacun des 34 centres intégrés de soutien du personnel à l'échelle du pays.Rapport au début de l'automne.

And here's the Ombudsman's "Preliminary Assessment" (highlights mine) ....
Quote
.... Following concerns raised in a complaint to the Office of the Department of National Defence and Canadian Forces (CF) Ombudsman (the Ombudsman) along with several high-profile media articles written this summer, the Ombudsman decided to conduct an assessment of potential issues regarding the JPSU’s staff adequacy and its services to ill or injured CF members.
 

The interim review took approximately five weeks and was conducted in two phases.
 
Phase One – Data Review

Firstly, all pertinent data and feedback gathered during recent Ombudsman outreach visits were reviewed. Contacts with the Office were also reviewed to capture any JPSU-related complaints received over the past 2 years.
 

Additionally, material gathered from hundreds of interviews done in support of three separate Ombudsman investigations (Operational Stress Injury IV, Military Families, and Reserved Care Follow-up) was also reviewed.
 
Phase Two – Canvass of a Cross-Section of JPSU/IPSC Clients and Staff

From a JPSU nominal roll of 1921 clients (CF members posted to the JPSU) and 291 staff, we solicited comments from a cross-section of 16 staff and 177 clients. It should also be noted that an additional 3,000 CF members and 554 CF families receive assistance from the JPSU/IPSCs.
 

Three principal issue areas were identified for assessment:
 

    Staffing Capacity: Whether staff in the Integrated Personnel Support Centre’s (IPSC) client services and JPSU platoon structure is adequate for the numbers of ill or injured members seeking services.
     
    Training/Staff Skill and Knowledge: Whether JPSU/IPSC staff possesses the skills, knowledge, and training required to effectively support and administer to the unique needs of JPSU/IPSC members and clients.
     
    Other: Whether there are other current or emerging trends/concerns that affect the effective operation of the JPSU as well as miscellaneous circumstances that may impact negatively on clients.
     

Staffing Capacity – Ombudsman Data

Outreach visits to CF locations by the Ombudsman or his staff normally include interaction with IPSCs. Insufficient staffing was the primary issued raised by IPSC staff across the board. The loss of Reserve Force members - due to new rules on retired CF personnel not being able to work as Reservists while also in receipt of a Regular Force pension - was widely noted as a big loss to JPSU detachments across the country.
 

By virtue of the can-do CF culture, shortfalls in staffing were often addressed from within the JPSU detachments as clients sometimes ended up as staff members.
 
Staffing Capacity - JPSU/IPSC Staff and Client Interviews

60% of interviews referenced insufficient staff numbers relative to JPSU member and client demands.
 

The change in policy to not allow Reservists to work while in receipt of a Regular Force pension was cited as a strong contributor to experienced people leaving the organization.

 
Training/Staff Skill and Knowledge – Ombudsman Data

Feedback gathered by Ombudsman staff suggested that training should be enhanced to better equip staff to manage potentially difficult situations. The effectiveness of JPSU staff appears to depend more on individual personalities and experience than training programs or a formalized competency profile1.
 
Training/Staff Skill and Knowledge - JPSU/IPSC Staff and Client Interviews

60% of interviews suggested inadequate skill and knowledge for the job and suggested a need for training to improve staff effectiveness, comfort and confidence.
 
Other – Ombudsman Data

Demand for JPSU assistance appears to be high. Two thirds of the CF personnel seeking assistance are external clients of the JPSU (ex: not posted to the unit).
 

Over the past 2 years, complaints to the Ombudsman’s office about the JPSU relate primarily to delays in - or denial of - a posting to the unit. These are normally investigated/addressed on a case-by-case basis.
 

With the exception of one complaint received early in 2013, relating primarily to the management of the JPSU, staffing, staff care, and their impacts on service-provision, the Office has not received complaints about the quality of services provided by the JPSU/IPSCs to its clients.
 
Other - JPSU/IPSC Staff and client interviews

28% of members sought assistance from the Ombudsman's office for their requests to be posted to the JPSU.
 

48% of interviews indicated that the successful reintegration of CF personnel back to their units is not being effectively captured and communicated.
 

There appears to be inconsistency in JPSU relations with other units focussed on helping ill and injured CF members. Most are reported as good while some others were described as being less functional in the view of some JPSU staff.
 

Other miscellaneous issues affecting those posted to JPSU/IPSC were noted. The majority of these were attributed to policies or decisions that are not within the purview of JPSU (ex: delays in payment of pension and severance). These issues can often be addressed on an individual, case-by-case basis, with or without the involvement of the Office of the Ombudsman.
 
Action by CF Authorities

As noted in previous Ombudsman reports that looked into the care of ill and injured CF personnel, numerous civilian positions had been left vacant during the current period of public service staffing restrictions.
 

Director Casualty Support Management (DCSM) reported that the Deputy Minister has provided exemptions to the hiring of Class B Reserve members (46 personnel) as well as approval to staff all civilian positions which had previously been left vacant during government-wide Public Service staffing restrictions.
 

The Social Work Officer within DCSM is developing a national training package that focuses on staff resiliency. There does not appear to be other training needs identified within the corporate training program.
 

The Chief of Military Personnel commenced an internal review of JPSU staffing, training and support in August 2013.
 
Analysis

The JPSU concept is relatively unique within allied military circles. Lessons learned are a normal part of evolving and maturing a new approach to managing ill and injured military personnel. Observations made during this review suggest there may be a requirement to review overall governance of support offered to ill and injured members.
 

There is a consistent reporting of staff shortages and a need for better training to inspire staff confidence and resiliency while supporting and administering to ill and injured clients who are posted to the IPSCs.
 

Specific experience and training requirements do not currently exist for CF members posted as staff to the JPSU. There is also no corporate training plan in place that includes modules to enhance staff confidence and effectiveness in dealing with the unique needs of JPSU members and clients (such as challenges linked to mental health, addictions, rehabilitation and return to work). As noted above, resiliency and self-care training have been identified as developmental requirements and are currently being developed by the DCSM Social Work Officer.
 
Conclusions, Recommendation(s), and Way Forward:

The information gleaned during this brief assessment confirms that meaningful efforts to address acute staffing challenges and training needs will undoubtedly improve JPSU/IPSC management and administration/support of injured and ill CF members transitioning to civilian life or pursuing a return to work in the military environment.
 

As mentioned previously, some effort is underway to develop a candidate assessment profile interview. Due to the unique challenges of work involved in supporting ill and injured members, it is recommended that the CF continue to put measures in place in order to ensure the careful and appropriate selection of individuals posted to the JPSU as staff.
 

It is essential to staff the JPSU with the appropriate number of personnel, to ensure these personnel possess the necessary experience and competencies, and to support them with suitable training. As noted above, this effort is ongoing and the Office of the Ombudsman will continue to assess progress in this regard.
 

The issues identified in this preliminary review echo those reported to the Office of the Ombudsman through various outreach activities as well as recent systemic investigations. Although the Office of the Ombudsman does not intend to undertake a more extensive investigation at this time, it will continue to closely monitor and evaluate the efforts underway to address the concerns raised.

Media's summary here:
Quote
The watchdog that oversees the Canadian Forces is raising serious concerns about the signature organization the Harper government relies upon within the military to help speed the recovery of wounded soldiers.

Joint personnel support units across the country are under-staffed and lack experienced people to guide physically and emotionally battered troops through their career transitions, the military ombudsman said in a preliminary assessment released Thursday.

Pierre Daigle undertook an assessment last summer following a series of complaints about the centres, which are supposed to prepare the wounded to either return to their front-line units or be discharged from the military.

Troops who can no longer carry out their regular jobs because of a physical or mental injury are posted to one of 24 joint support units across Canada, where they have three years to recover enough to meet the military's universality-of-service rule, or leave the military altogether.

The centres, critical linchpins in a system designed to speed the recovery of injured and traumatized soldiers, came up in the House of Commons this week when Defence Minister Rob Nicholson insisted wounded soldiers are not being summarily hustled out the door into civilian life without due care and consideration.

In interviews with a few hundred clients and staff, Daigle's investigators found — among other things — that a government policy which prohibits pensioned reservists from working at the units is creating a brain drain ....
“Most great military blunders stem from the good intentions of some high-ranking buffoon ...” – George MacDonald Fraser, "The Sheik and the Dustbin"

The words I share here are my own, not those of anyone else or anybody I may be affiliated with.

Tony Prudori
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Offline stokerwes

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #47 on: November 01, 2013, 09:43:37 »
I read that JPSU is going to be granted a three year extension to continue to employ reservists that are ex RegF, I think it was 47 pers. I hope that is the case and that those that do get extended are acutally working in the the IPSC/JPSU's now to keep the experience where it needs to be. The staff at any IPSC I have dealt with have always been top notch. They can only work with what they have. Hopefully the employee shortage issues will get addressed before the pers that currently work at IPCS do not suffer from burn out. I know a few that put a lot of time in to get the job done.

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #48 on: November 01, 2013, 09:48:14 »
I read that JPSU is going to be granted a three year extension to continue to employ reservists that are ex RegF, I think it was 47 pers. I hope that is the case and that those that do get extended are acutally working in the the IPSC/JPSU's now to keep the experience where it needs to be. The staff at any IPSC I have dealt with have always been top notch. They can only work with what they have. Hopefully the employee shortage issues will get addressed before the pers that currently work at IPCS do not suffer from burn out. I know a few that put a lot of time in to get the job done.

Well said. :salute:
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Offline Future Pensioner

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Re: JPSU
« Reply #49 on: November 01, 2013, 13:30:33 »
I read that JPSU is going to be granted a three year extension to continue to employ reservists that are ex RegF, I think it was 47 pers. I hope that is the case and that those that do get extended are acutally working in the the IPSC/JPSU's now to keep the experience where it needs to be. The staff at any IPSC I have dealt with have always been top notch. They can only work with what they have. Hopefully the employee shortage issues will get addressed before the pers that currently work at IPCS do not suffer from burn out. I know a few that put a lot of time in to get the job done.

Speaking from experience in dealing with one of the JPSUs (and I hope they are all not like this) - it would be nice if the hired a few Reservists who have only been Reservists, as I had to do a lot of "explaining" and "educating" about Reservists issues/entitlements when I had to deal with them, and it sure would be nice to have someone who understands the issues.

And please, don't anyone turn this into a Reg vs Reserve "bashing" exercise.