Posted on Jul 25, 2017
SGT Infantryman
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Situation: 6 guys have requested, been approved by the rear D CMD, and received a control number, for leave for 1 Aug-14 Aug. My soldiers have already made plans as we are only a week out. I am now being told by the rear D SMG that their leave days are wrong. How ever his signature is on some of the paperwork previously approving it. How do I approach this situation, and what is the AR's guidance?
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Responses: 5
1SG Claims Assistant
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The commander giveth, and the commander taketh away.
The Command NCO does not have authority to say no, but he is likely acting under orders from the commander who does. And the commander absolutely has authority to recall Soldiers from leave, deny it in the first place, or change his mind on leave already granted.
What he SHOULD do is communicate the reason why.
Sounds like an opportunity to use the open door policy. There is still time to figure this out for all or at least some of your Soldiers.
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
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Perfect response.. Thanks 1SG (Join to see)
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SGM Erik Marquez
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Edited >1 y ago
1st your not on leave until you sign out. Before that all you have is a request and an approval, which can be revoked at anytime by the approver for any reason they so deem justified. (Note I said approver, of which the CSM is not, but Id bet he is acting IAW the commanders knowledge or direction)
2nd, you can be recalled from leave at any time the commander deems it justified.
Ar 600-8-10 Section VII
10–13. Rules to recall Soldier from leave
a. The commander is the recall authority when Soldiers are on authorized leave and are needed for return to duty for reasons of military necessity.

You will note there is no AR definition of "military necessity" so the reason could be, the SM failed to clean his assigned barracks room as ordered before leave, to the Married SM failed to cut his grass as so directed before leave, to the Sm in question needs to be interviewed as part of an investigation he is a material witness. All the way to Mission change and the SM in question is a vital asset to the mission. Unit tasked to move and set up BOTH assigned JNN, and they have only TWO qualified 25S capable of accomplishing the task...No other unit in the area has a 25S to spare and the mission was tasked from higher HQ ...Guess who is getting called off leave......
http://www.apd.army.mil/epubs/DR_pubs/DR_a/pdf/web/r600_8_10.pdf
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SFC Joseph Weber
SFC Joseph Weber
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When we got alerted for a deployment it went like this...1SG- "Weber, your leave is cancelled" Me- "OK Top".
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CW3 Network Architect
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Unless the rear-d SGM is willing to go to the commander and have him put out a memo revoking those solders' leaves, if I were one of the six, I'd sign out on leave anyway. Verbal just isn't going to cut it after a written approval. Ask the SGM what he means by "their leave days are wrong"??
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
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Chief, CW3 (Join to see) respect what your saying..And Id advise my commander to put it in writing as well...But just as a CYA, its not required.

All that is required is the approver revokes the approval..That can be "Hey CSM, tell Marquez I just revoked his leave dates...I'll see him in the TOC Thursday"
To typing up an MFR and providing a copy to the SM in question (what i would advise) as it will make it faster and easier to clear the IG complaint or congressional inquiry. Simply respond, because I said so, I am the commander, and I had justification. Here is a copy of the MFR.. No go away, we have work to do.

All that said, unless the SM got the dates wrong (and even then If I can do without him, suck it up as a soldier support deal), unless the SM is NEEDED and vital to the accomplishment of the units mission on the dates in question..The Unit SHOULD take the hit, let the leave happen and suck it up. Then address the underlying issue that caused the problem. Who did not communicate? Who did not confirm and double check dates BEFORE approving, Who did not cross walk the units mission and taskings upcoming and consider the manpower needed to accomplish all assigned and implied tasks. (I saw this failure a lot by BDE and BN's when I was the G3 SGM..tasking known 6 month out, units KNOW they will get tasked for xx 25S, or life guard qualified SM or licensed drivers for a M2A3...then FAIL to consider that before letting folks take opportunity leave )
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CW3 Network Architect
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Here's the thing about that, SGM Erik Marquez, why are they waiting until a week out to revoke already granted approval? "Because I'm the commander and I said so", even if this IS the case, and not some SGM overstepping his authority just because he knows his commander will back it up, is cold comfort to a soldier who has a signed, approved leave form WITH a control number, and relied on that to make what are likely non-refundable travel arrangements. I know if I lost out on the cost of a plane ticket because of my unit when I was a young private, and was told "suck it up" in a situation like this, it would have killed my morale. How are soldiers supposed to plan when their leaders can't plan properly?
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
>1 y
CW3 (Join to see) - Chief I whole heartedly agree. And it would take a HUGE requirement I nor anyone I could use as an asset could not solve, overcome or otherwise mitigate the need for this ONE (ok 6 in this case) Soldier to be present.

If the command (1st line supervisor, though unit 1SG, to approver) screwed up and let leave go though for dates not part of the "plan" ..thats on them, and the 6 SM "SHOULD" be allowed to take the approved leave. That may mean a CDR has to go to his boss, or bosses boss and fall on his sword ..so be it, its called integrity..And in the end it will pay off with a group of subordinates that will support the CDR, that will cross a road direct under fire to accomplish a mission, who will see a task that needs completed, and though it means staying late, doing the job with less then optimal manning or tools, they will do it, because the CDR (and NCO leadership) stands behind their word when it was more convenient and easy for them to have just said no.
All that said, I do not in anyway have enough info on this one specific incident, the background in how they got to this point, what was said, what was done and what went wrong to make a statement or support for the Service members or for the commands decision.

For all we know...the unit published leave days X though Y, SM's were well aware of it, informed verbally and in last months counseling, but put in for dates Z though A anyway and it was missed at the unit level... Id still likely let them go, work though what that caused, and then keep the shenanigans in mind when i needed to consider that SM on the "Whole Soldier" concept for some later action or request.. "Hmm remember that time you knowingly snuck the wrong leave dates though the system,..ye I remember too......"
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CW3 Network Architect
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>1 y
If they did that, yeah...I'm with you on that one.
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