Support from employers

Employers will need to be aware of the following legislation:


The Reserve Forces (Safeguard of Employment) Act 1985 (SOE 85)

This provides two types of protection:

  • Protection of employment: the Act provides protection from unfair dismissal. It makes it a criminal offence for an employer to terminate a reservist’s job without their consent solely or mainly because he or she has a liability to be mobilised.
  • Rights to reinstatement: the Act provides a legal right to reinstate the reservist to their former job, subject to certain conditions.

The Reserve Forces Act 1996 (RFA 96)

This sets out the call-out powers under which Reservists can be mobilised for full-time service.

MOD employers advice

The MOD would advocate that employers provide the following:

  • time off for training commitments wherever possible
  • accommodate mobilisation if required to deploy
  • support in preparation for, during and after mobilisation, including access to occupational health and employee support services
  • recognition of training and experience from Reserve Service relevant to employment, which is included on personal records and personal development plans
  • encouragement to keep in contact at a social level with friends and colleagues from the workplace during periods of mobilisation
  • re-employment in the same type of job they were doing before being mobilised, on the same terms and conditions. If the job no longer exists, the Reservist is entitled to a reasonable alternative

Support from Warwickshire County Council for our employees

We support our staff to be Reservists through the following:

  • Up to 10 days paid leave per annum (pro rata for part time staff) for employees serving in the Reserve Armed Forces for undertaking their annual training camp or other training specific to their Reserve role.
  • Support during any periods of mobilisation and the process of returning to work. When a call-up notice is issued, the employee is required by law to comply with it. If a member of staff is called up for Reserve Service they should immediately notify their Line Manager who will seek advice from a Senior HR Advisor. 
  • Access to support services through the Occupational Health provider.

There is a range of support for spouses of Reservists. Spouses of serving Regular or Reserve Forces personnel may be required to adjust family arrangements following a posting or deployment of the Regular or Reserve serving person. This can place additional burdens upon the spouse/family and they may wish to consider the option of flexible working as a temporary or permanent measure. 

Compassionate or special leave may be granted to allow employees to assist them in dealing with crises or difficulties in their personal lives. In the context of the Armed Forces these situations may be for Reservists or spouses of Regular/Reserve Force personnel:

  • Leave at short notice before mobilisation i.e. to spend time with family and prepare for mobilisation.
  • Post mobilisation leave. 
  • Injury or death during service, mobilisation or reserve training.