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Reserve Forces

Volume 476: debated on Tuesday 20 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many civilian employer complaints his Department received on the deployment of reserve forces in the last period for which figures are available; and what percentage of the total number of deployments this represents. (206155)

Under the Reserve Forces Act 1996, the employer of a member of the reserve forces is entitled to apply for his or her employee’s exemption from call out or recall into permanent or mobilised service or to have the employee’s call out or recall deferred or revoked or, if the employee has been accepted into service, to seek his or her release from permanent service. Such an application is made to a service adjudication officer, whose decision or determination can be challenged by way of a re-hearing of the application by a Reserve Forces Appeal Tribunal, a judicial body independent of the Ministry of Defence.

As detailed in the following table, in 10 cases only have applications for exemption, etc., by employers been decided at Reserve Forces Appeal Tribunals, established on 1 April 1997, since which more than 17,000 members of the reserve forces have been deployed on mobilised service.

Reserve Forces Appeal Tribunals—employer exemption cases —1 April 1997 to 16 May 2008

Number

Appeals registered

152

Appeals later withdrawn or settled out of court

42

Appeals decided at tribunal

110

Appeals decided for the appellant employer

2

Appeals decided for the Respondent Service Authority

18

1 One case only since March 2004.