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Duckworth, Manchin, Cramer Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Give Guard and Reserve Members Equal Hazard-Duty Incentive Pay | U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth of Illinois

February 18, 2020

[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kevin Cramer (R-ND) introduced a bipartisan bill to give National Guard and Reserve members equal hazard duty incentive pay (HDIP). Identical bipartisan legislation has already been introduced in the House.

Hazard Duty Incentive Pay is a type of special and incentive pay used to improve recruiting and retention by increasing compensation for hazardous duty assignments or conditions. This pay is in addition to base pay. Service members eligible for this pay include, but are not limited to, those who perform parachute jumping, explosive demolitions, handle toxic fuels, and engage in operations on a flight deck. Currently, under HDIP guidelines in Title 37, Guard and Reserve Service Members are awarded 1/30th of HDIP but these servicemembers must maintain the same qualifications as their active duty counterparts without receiving the same pay. The bill would create pay equity for HDIP for all Guard and Reserve service members.

“Right now, reserve duty servicemembers who qualify for hazardous duty are only paid a fraction of what their active duty counterparts are paid. Every member of the National Guard, whether active or reserve duty, deserves to be fairly compensated when they take on the additional risks associated with hazardous duty. This inequity hurts our military readiness and I’m glad to help introduce this bill that would ensure that servicemembers – regardless of the component they serve – are paid equally,” said Senator Duckworth.

“Our National Guard and Reserve servicemembers risk their lives so Americans can enjoy the freedoms they have fought for us to keep. We owe it to those who put themselves in harm’s way that they are paid comparably to their active duty colleagues. That is why I introduced this bill to ensure that all Guard and Reserve servicemembers are receiving the pay they deserve for their hard work and sacrifices. I am proud to support our servicemembers across our great nation and look forward to passing this legislation through Congress and sending it to the President’s desk for approval,” said Senator Manchin.

“The National Guard is an essential part of our military, playing an indispensable role in protecting our country,” said Senator Cramer. “The Guard members who qualify for hazard-duty incentive pay are doing work just as dangerous as their active duty counterparts, and they deserve to be compensated as such.”

“The National Guard Association of the United States (NGAUS) thanks Sen. Manchin Sen. Cramer, and Sen. Duckworth for introducing the Guard and Reserve Hazard Duty Pay Equity Act which ensures full hazardous duty pay to National Guard servicemembers serving in high-risk jobs,” said retired Brig. Gen. J. Roy Robinson, the NGAUS President. “As we continue to improve laws that do not provide full parity to the National Guard, efforts like this are critical. These Soldiers and Airmen do the same work, with the same risk, and deserve equal consideration for incentive pay. We urge the quick passage of this critical piece of legislation.”

The House companion bill was introduced by Representatives Andy Kim (NJ-03), Trent Kelly (MS-01), Tim Ryan (OH-13), Steven Palazzo (MS-04), Tom Cole (OK-04) and Elissa Slotkin (MI-08).

This bill is also endorsed by the National Guard Association of the United States (NGAUS), Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States (EANGUS), and the Reserve Officers Association (ROA), the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), and the Fleet Reserve Association (FRA)

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