Wearing of Red Cross emblems. Anyone know the rules and where they are to be found?

Discussion in 'Professionally Qualified, RAMC and QARANC' started by BuggerAll, Oct 14, 2012.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Does anyone know what the rules are for the wearing of red cross emblems.

    The only thing I can find is on the ICRC's website which says they should be a red cross on a white background made from a waterproof material (by which I take it to mean won't run if it gets wet rather than made of gortex) and must be worn on the left arm.

    I have been told that to be valid they should have a unit stamp on them and that capbadged medical personnel should wear a larger red cross than non-badged personnel support staff but I cannot find those requirements anywhere.

    From a practical point if view would a TRF sized (or slightly bigger) red cross on a white background on the PCS blanking panel meet the requirements?

    Or perhaps a white blanking panel with a red cross on.

    Would there be a problem having the Union flag on the white panel?

    Could we use a round white badge on the blanking panel? -which would allow it to be slightly bigger.
  2. why not just put up with the issue one (which should be stamped before deployment and issued along with all the other useful items like f/ident 107's and 189's. Some units have been issuing crosses on velcro patches others have been using brassards, but only a utter nutter would wear one outside of Bastion anyway. People have been known to take the issue item to the chogi tailoring shops and get those velcro'd
    Currently only role three personnel are wearing them in theatre. If you get a few spare ones then Pedro and Dustoff crews will swap them for their much groovier badges.

    I think it's only a British Army requirement that Badged medical staff wear the larger cross and others wear the smaller one. Even then in the past it wasn't uncommon for badged medical staff attached to other units to be issued the wrong one as nobody knew any better. it could also be cut down smaller and be less of a target for those who bothered to wear them in the first place.

    Maybe we'll all be wearing the red crystal in future anyway.
  3. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    What you are saying is you don't know either.

    By issue ones do you mean some of the variety of armbands and brassards that units are having made or the old cold war stock that gets dug up from the back of stores.

    I'm asking because I'm involved in a discussion about what we should be issuing and nobody seems to know what the rules actually are or where they are to be found.
  4. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

  5. A red cross armband, to comply with the various Geneva protocols should be an armband. It should not be a brassard or a sewn on badge. It signifies that the wearer is protected by the applicable Geneva protocols and that he/she is not a belligerent (the God Squad also come under this) It means, that you are not a belligerent and that if you are captured you do not have the status of 'Prisoner of War' But are rather a 'detained person'. You also have a responsibility to minister to the wounded of the enemy should they come under your remit. Persons who have the protection of the Red Cross may carry weapons and be trained in the use of such weapons but only for self protection or the protection of the casualties/patients in their care. The rules do say that the armband should carry a valid unit stamp.

    All the above applies to us, but not to the other side if they haven't signed up to the rules.

    I am sure that the interweb thingy can give chapter and verse.
  6. It should be a band for 'all round vis', even though the cross is only visible from one side. In Herrick it is unlikley the Taliban would treat a captured medic, any different to anybody else unlucky enough to be in their grasp. Perhaps the cut down red cross is more of a identity thing on camps?

    Never knew it was a unit stamp, as they are usually unreadable, but they are stamped.

    Never heard of differing sizes.

    How does that actually work, if a hospital (for example) was taken, would the medics be 'detained persons' and the drivers, Logs, AGC and RE chap be PoW?
  7. The medics, dentists, padres etc (with big crosses) would be 'detained persons'. TBH I am not really sure about the 'wee cross' people... However Google will probably know (I couldn't be arrsed looking it up)
  8. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    I've done a bit more searching and this is what I've found on an ICRC site.

    Linky to the whole chapter.

    So that's were the unit stamp thing comes from. The distinctive emblem is the red cross, crescent or crystal on a white background. The emblem must not touch the edge of the white background but there is no definition of size or different sizes indeed of what an armlet is or what colour it should be.

    Unless some one out there knows otherwise.
  9. Jolly well done old chap.............thread finished :eek:)
  10. The IRC red cross isn't the same one as is used to identify military medical assets
  11. Yes. The detained person status is only given to medical and the clergy. The detained person is required to work in their capacity until no longer required, at which point they should be returned. Unlikely

    Additionally, the personal weapon should be defensive, and not offensive, hence iron sights rather than SUSAT on personal weapons, and SMG rather than Rifle back "in the day"

    As memory serves, the cross has a set size per use, ie personal, vehicles, tentage etc, but basically has the ratio of 5 squares. Any asset displaying the insignia should not be fired upon directly. Attached personel (ie drivers etc) wear the cross, but smaller (half size if memory serves). I don't recall what status they are afforded, but I have a feeling none on capture, but are to be regarded as medical assets in the field, ie they are part of the hospital in the same way a GS table is.

    In current theatres, removal of the red cross by personal removes the protection it affords, however, it is very unlikely the protection would be respected even if it were worn.
  12. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    You're clearly far smarter than me because I still don't know what the rules that British medics must adhere to or or where they are laid down.
  13. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    That's what we all believe are the rules but why? It doesn't say annoying about different sizes (that I can find) in the Geneva Convention.
  14. BuggerAll

    BuggerAll LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Not really. It has the background to why we wear what we wear and what we should be conforming to but, unless I've missed something, it's not actually very specific on sizes etc.

    I suppose it is possible that we don't have regulations beyond complying with the GCs and that units are re-inventing the wheel. I wonder if the current widespread practise of using a patch on a brassard actually complies with the GC rules. Putting a patch on the velcro blanking patch would seem to be just as in keeping and far more practical in PCS.