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Thursday, October 17, 2019

Top enlisted Marines push corpsmen equal pay for deployments

Snagged this from Navytimes I am glad the Top Marine Enlisted Leaders are trying to look out for, us, IMHO the Navy “OFFICER” Leaders forget about those of us who serve with the Marine Corps.

What do you think?? Leave a comment Below:

When sailors deploy with Marine units, they live in the same conditions, eat the same food and face the same dangers.

But when Marine units are extended in Iraq or Afghanistan, the sailors don’t always get the same bonus pay. That needs to change, the Corps’ top enlisted members say.

The Corps’ sergeants major community has recommended to Marine Commandant Gen. James Conway that the service investigate options for giving those sailors the same assignment incentive pay, or AIP.

“You’re talking about being fair,” said Sgt. Maj. of the Marine Corps Carlton Kent, the Corps’ senior enlisted adviser. “We always have to be fair in the Marine Corps.”

The recommendation came out of the Sergeants Major Symposium, an annual meeting of top enlisted Marines in which policy recommendations are debated. Six command master chiefs were allowed to participate in the symposium for the first time, following an invitation from Kent.

Command Master Chief Raphael Sanchez, the top enlisted sailor with I Marine Expeditionary Force and Marine Corps Central Command, praised Kent for allowing command master chiefs to join the symposium, held from July 27 to Aug. 1.

Additionally, Sanchez said the issue of AIP is worth discussing.

“Even though it’s a [Defense Department] policy, the Navy implements it one way and the Marine Corps implements it another,” he said. “When you have sailors and Marines serving together … discrepancies kind of show up.”

Sanchez said the change would apply primarily to corpsmen, but also to religious program specialists and other sailors serving with Marines. About 8,000 sailors serve with the Corps, Sanchez said.

Sailors whose combat zone deployments are involuntarily extended beyond 12 months receive the same as Marines, $800 per month in AIP and an additional $200 in hardship duty pay, said Capt. Jerry Logan, acting director of the Navy’s Military Personnel Plans and Policy Division.

But the Navy has not sought to expand AIP to match the Corps’ policy of paying $250 per month to Marines extended beyond 210 days but less than 365 days, Logan said in a statement. “The Navy’s retention, recruiting and mission requirements differ from the Marine Corps, thus we use the Assignment Incentive Pay program differently,” he said.

The Navy offers AIP for various hard-to-fill billets via an auction-style Web site; sailors submit bids for pay they would accept in exchange for orders.

Sanchez said he is impressed with the Corps’ openness to discussing sailor issues. “I’ve been serving with the Marine Corps since 1993, and this is probably the most progressive that I have seen the Marine Corps be,” he said.

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