SaBRE Helpline

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by SaBRE_helpline, Oct 19, 2006.

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  1. Allow me to introduce myself …

    SaBRE_helpline is a user set up by the SaBRE campaign HQ in London so that we can provide information and advice on any employer issues which are raised on ARRSE.

    The answers to most common questions can be found on our website ( but if any Reservist or employer needs more information you can email us through the website or call our helpline, 0800 389 5459.

    We will also respond to any PMs sent to SaBRE_helpline. We know that some Reservists are concerned about contacting SaBRE directly in case information is passed to their employers or back through the chain-of-command (neither of which will ever happen except with your specific agreement). The PM system on ARRSE provides you with a way of contacting us for advice anonymously.

    Many thanks

  2. Excellent idea and just to see this means I've been wrong on a few posts. Thanks for doing this
  3. Good to see you on here Sabre. Feel free to butt in on threads when we start getting all het up about the latest untrue rumours on mobilisation rights etc too!
  4. I was injured in Iraq on Op telic 3 by a roadside bomb, although i took out personal insurance they seem unwilling to part with any cash. This situation has been going on for over three years now. Would you be able to help, or do you know any organisation that could.
  5. ben0239

    Sorry to hear about your misfortune but SaBRE's remit only covers issues with employers - which it doesn't sound as if this is.

    If it is a dispute between you and an insurance provider then the Financial Ombudsman is probably your best bet (
  6. Sabre Helpline - welcome to ARRSE. Good initiative to have exposure through these boards. My guess is that it will help clear up some of the misconceptions that people have. I am surprised however that it has taken three and a half years for Sabre to act proactively in this way. Whilst understanding that Sabre's remit is towards employers moreso than the TA soldier himself, could you give us some examples of the lines of communication that Sabre have had with TA soldiers since TELIC commenced?
  7. ABrighter2006

    Thanks for the welcome.

    The SaBRE website has always included information for Reservists and the helpline has always been open to Reservists to call. However, as you say, SaBRE’s direct communication is mainly aimed at employers - primarily through direct mail, media relations and face-to-face meetings - which, in turn, benefits Reservists working for those employers.

    The prime source of direct support for Reservists has been, and continues to be, the chain-of-command including the Unit Employer Support Officers (who exist in various guises as well as UESO, including RRRWO). UESOs work closely with SaBRE’s full-time representatives in each region and SaBRE provides a variety of support materials, advice and information to them.

    The Defence Directive on Employer Support (JSP 766, March 2005) is the document which sets out who has responsibility to do what, from which an excerpt is below. There's also a link to a pdf of the document.

    I hope this helps clarify the situation.


    "The Chain of Command has primacy in the provision of direct support to Reservists in their relationship with their employers. This support is principally provided at Unit level although there are also dedicated staffs at higher levels of the Command chain. A CO has two interests in Emp Sp: the welfare of his Reservist and the availability of that Reservist for training and mobilization. Maintaining durable Emp Sp relations is, therefore, a vitally important task for COs who are to appoint a Unit Employer Support Officer (UESO). …… the main role of UESOs is therefore to provide Reservists with the information, guidance and assistance they need in support of their relationship with their immediate line manager."
  8. Many thanks for the response. I'm sure I'm not the only person who posts on these boards, who has a had less than a good experience in relation to the employer / employee / CoC / Sabre relationship and areas of responsibility, etc. I'm sure you'll be at pains to point out improvements in the way these areas are now processed, but, anecdotally at least, the system has not done what it says on the can for a number of reservists.

    I (and I guess many others) would be interested to know just how much weight Sabre actually has, when employer / reservist relationships go sour? This isn't a criticism, but Sabre appears to be little more than a PR unit of the MOD, selling the concept of "the better employee, through the employee's reservist employment" - all very good stuff. My question directly is; If Sabre is made aware of an employer who discriminates against a reservist in their employ, what action does Sabre take?

    This is not a wah, but a brief look through several of the threads on this board will give a clear picture of the issues that reservists have suffered, and there seems to be little clear direction on which organisation is responsible for ensuring that RFA96 is being adhered to by employers.
  9. If you suspect that your employer has infringed his/her legal obligations, the legal options open to you vary according to which provision you are talking about – but they are set out on the SaBRE website.

    If your employer is staying within the law but being difficult, the only option open to you is persuasion.

    You have several sources, described above, that you can turn to for general advice and information to help you make your case to your employer.

    If you want further assistance, it is your chain of command or UESO you should ask for help (see JSP 766). They have access to a range of other resources (such as senior members of your Unit, the SaBRE representative for your region and other employers) who can be involved as your C-of-C / UESO see fit and agree with you.
  10. Thank you - but your response does not answer the question. Let me repeat it here, so that it is clear:

    If Sabre is made aware of an employer who discriminates against a reservist in their employ, what action does Sabre take?


    There are lots of courses of action depending on the employers action. I cannot see any reference to how Sabre get involved and what their responsibilities are. In relation to your earlier answer about talking to the CoC; I did, they directed me to Sabre. Sabre directed me to the Sabre website.

    Possibly, you could supply some numbers, for the number of reservists that have been through the processes you mention, and how much input these regional reps had in the process. My understanding is that a number of reservists, have had to do all the work themselves, with no support from Sabre or the Chain of Command.
  11. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to clarify SaBRE’s role.

    Firstly, I would refer anyone reading this to the Defence Directive on Employer Support (JSP 766, March 2005) which sets out the roles and responsibilities of the various organisations involved in Employer Support in considerable detail.

    SaBRE is not a law-enforcement agency, nor is it the sole MOD provider of Employer Support. As the Chief of the Defence Staff puts it in his foreword to JSP 766:
    “Reservists play a pivotal role in gaining and maintaining the support of their employers but Employer Support is also a welfare, recruiting and retention function and, as such, primary responsibility for direct support lies with the Chain of Command. Nonetheless, the Chain of Command relies on the assistance of various other agencies to deliver Employer Support. It is important, therefore, that all the agencies involved in Employer Support understand where they fit within the overall framework and act in a co-ordinated, complementary way.”

    JSP 766 goes on to explain:
    “The SaBRE Campaign is a MOD funded, branded marketing campaign … it is not focussed on direct support to Reservists but on engaging with employers and establishing a dialogue with them. At national level, SaBRE uses commercial techniques to inform the employers of Reservists of their rights and obligations and to promote the benefits of employing Reservists through such mechanisms as direct mail, PR, advertising, a website and a freephone helpline. The national SaBRE team also includes a National Relationship Manager whose role is to engage with the head offices of large private and public sector employers in order to recruit policy support for the employment of Reservists. At national level, SaBRE attempts to develop an environment within which regional activity can flourish. During mobilisation, SaBRE’s main aim remains unaltered but it will include relevant information on its website, increase the resources on its freephone call centre and tailor its messaging to fit the situation.”

    The SaBRE Campaign is founded on the principle that the better informed employers are, the more supportive they are likely to be – a principle borne out both by extensive research and by anecdotal evidence. This information broadly falls into three categories: the benefits, rights and obligations associated with employing a member of the Reserve Forces. The purpose of providing a presence of ARRSE is to help ensure that accurate information is available to Reservists when they are in discussion with their employers.

    I hope this clarifies matters and we can now focus our time on assisting Reservists with specific issues they are trying to resolve with their employer.
  12. Many thanks for the response, this makes Sabre's position and responsibilities very clear in relation to assisting Reservists.
  13. I am about to Deploy on Telic 9
    And Have been told that the job I was in has been changed and the Crew I worked with have been split up....
    The Reason give to my former workmates were that "there Was Problems" with our Crew....I Work for a Local Council and was given no notification of these changes to my working conditions,but i am still sent monthly team brief by post to my home!
    I had no verbal or written warnings of any kind before Chillwell
    I was also put forward for Employee of the year (Why I Will never know!) but because of my sevice in Iraq pending this was rejected on the grounds of council policy about operations there...this all happened with out my consent.
    A brief was then held and my name was raised when the Employee of the year thing was covered and the reason I was rejected!
    This was told to the whole I am a Reserve Team Leader
    I feel this will affect my standing in the workforce..:(
    Where do I Stand?
    (Not worried about being Top Employee! more worried about changing job spec and my name being used when not there to defend it!)

    SaBRE being on this site is a great Idea for getting good advice,Well done!
  14. Tartan_Ninja,

    Firstly, on the changes to your job, the key piece of legislation is the Reserve Forces (Safeguard of Employment) Act 1985, which covers an employer’s obligations to reinstate you after demobilisation.

    Section 1 of the Act says:
    [The employer shall] be obliged to take the applicant into his employment –
    (a) in the occupation in which the applicant was last employed by the former employer before the beginning of his whole-time service and on terms and conditions not less favourable to his those which would have been applicable to him in that occupation had he not entered on such service; or
    (b) if it is not reasonable and practicable that the applicant should be taken into employment in that occupation and on those terms and conditions, in the most favourable terms and conditions which are reasonable and practicable in his case.

    This means, in effect, that you should be treated the same as you would have been if you had not been mobilised. Section (b) above covers circumstances where it is impossible for someone to be given exactly the same job back after being mobilised (as a result of, for example a company reorganisation or a factory closure). More details are at

    From what you’ve said, it sounds as if the changes to your working arrangements as a result of your crew being split up would have happened whether or not you had been mobilised - so your employer is within their rights. If, however, when you return you are only offered a poorer role when they could give you something similar to the job you've just left, then your employer is in the wrong and you can take action if you want to.

    On the Employee of the Year award, although the way this has been handled sounds like poor management, such awards are entirely up to the employer how they are decided upon and organised – so I’m afraid that there is nothing you can do.

    Finally, I would reiterate our general advice for all mobilised Reservists.

    1. Keep in touch with your employer while you are away – don’t just disappear off the face of the planet until you have been demobilised and want your job back. Sending an occasional short email keeps you in mind and provides some small understanding of what you are doing.

    2. Similarly, if there are things such as employee newsletters which can be posted or emailed to you while you are away, ask for them to be sent to you. This shows an interest in your employer and helps you to follow any changes which will affect you when you return.

    3. Brief your unit (your normal TA unit, not the one you are being posted to) about your employer and any action you want taken (or not taken) while you are away. There should be someone coordinating relations with employers while you are away (a Unit Employer Support Officer or someone else covering that role) and you should make them aware of any issues with your employer and whether you want them to contact your employer with any updates or invitations to events etc.

    4. Particularly if you are having difficulties with your employer, encourage your UESO to speak to the Regional SaBRE Campaign Director for your region. Particularly if there are other Reservists, possibly from other units, working for the same employer the RSCD may well have information about the employer or useful points of contact. The RSCD also organises a range of events (even including some employer visits to Iraq) and other activities which your unit can use to help generate good relations with an employer when appropriate.

    Hope this helps - and good luck with the tour.
  15. Thank you for the advice....

    will take the points on board..
    Dropped in to see my boss today.....(on Pre Deploy leave) and he seemed keen to visit me in Theater...who would i see about this?