QDJM and the entitlement of certain STABs thereto

(Also posted in the Army Reserve forum)

Apologies for dragging up an old subject. A mate has recently been affected by this issue.

The qualifying criteria for the QDJM medal were, for members of the TA:

a. They had to be in military service on 06 Feb 12; and
b. They had to have completed 5 years' qualifying service (as defined) but training year 2011-12 must be one of the qualifying years; and
c. They had to obtain a Commanding Officer's Certificate of Efficiency (COE) for the 2011-2012 training year by 31 Mar 12.

These criteria produced the anomalous result whereby members of the TA who had 5 years' qualifying service (or more, and in some cases much more) as at 06 Feb 12 would not be awarded the medal. Due to the unfortunate wording of the DIN, they would not be entitled to the gong if they did not go on, after the qualifying date, to obtain a COE for that training year. The wording of paragraph 4(b) of 2011DIN09-012 is clear: "the correct overall total of 5 Certificates of Efficiency (annual bounty earning training years) [must be] fully accounted for by 31 Mar 12."

That produced a (presumably unintended) discriminatory outcome. A Regular with 5 years' qualifying service on 06 Feb 12 who left the Army the following day would get the medal. A STAB with, say, 10 years' service, or more, on 06 Feb 12 who failed to go on to get a COE for that final year would not get the medal.

Essentially, that failure to get a COE rendered their entire service for 2011-2012 and earlier qualifying years invalid even though they were clearly in military service on the qualifying date and had 5 years' qualifying service. Even if they could point to qualifying service in other years which would take them over the 5-year threshold on 06 Feb 12, that would not count. What mattered, completely arbitrarily, was that they got a COE for that final training year. That was the effect of rule (b) above.

My main question relates to rule (c) and concerns those who -

  • were granted an extension to the deadline for completing the necessary training in training year 2011-2012,
  • completed the necessary training by the end of the extension period; and so
  • were awarded a COE for training year 2011-2012.

In that sense, their training for that year ought to have counted as valid qualifying service. But in their case, even though they had completed 5 years' qualifying service including TY 2011-12, they were caught by the arbitrary deadline of having to have achieved this by 31 Mar 12. I say "arbitrary" because TA Regulations expressly permits extensions of the deadline. In my view, the 31 Mar 12 deadline was probably set by someone ignorant of the existence of the possibility of an extension.

Main question: the Medals Office currently applies rule (c). However, was it ever relaxed to take extensions into account, or challenged because it did not take TA Regulations properly into account?

Bonus question: was the arbitrariness of rule (b) ever challenged? If so, what was the outcome?
I think you should ask a lawyer.

One of those Barrister types, when they knock off from Costa.
As it happens That exact situation happened to myself as I was caring for my aged parents and couldn't complete bounty for that specific year, disappointing yes , arbitrary yes, cause to get upset - well possibly I like to think of this as yet another example of how the Regular Army misinterprets how and why the Reserve both operates and is motivated. Someone decided on those rules which if applied on the Regular side of the fence would have meant a fair number missing out. But hey ho, life is unfair, I think I can get over it.
I didn't make county that year either, no QDJM for me, do I care? No not really.

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