# 2013-114 - Cadet Organizations Administration and Training Service (COATS), Reserve Force Retirement Gratuity

Cadet Organizations Administration and Training Service (COATS), Reserve Force Retirement Gratuity

Case Summary

F&R Date: 2013–12–30

The grievor, a member of the Cadet Organizations Administration and Training Service (COATS), a sub-component of the Reserve Force (Res F), complained of being denied entitlement to the Reserve Force Retirement Gratuity (RFRG) upon his retirement after completing approximately 19 years of continuous Class B service. Immediately prior to this continuous service, the grievor had served on various periods of Class A and B service with COATS and he had transferred to and from the Supplementary Reserve several times.

The grievor acknowledged that the policy excluded him from the RFRG benefit but he asserted that all sub-components should be entitled to the benefit to ensure pay and benefit equity as is the case for the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Pension Plan since its modernization. The grievor argued that the policy is unfair because it results in an inequity between sub-components of the Res F. As redress, the grievor sought payment of the RFRG benefit.

The Initial Authority (IA) denied the grievance on the basis that the grievor was not entitled to receive the benefit. The IA pointed out that Treasury Board (TB) is the sole authority for the policy and concluded that the requested remedy could not be addressed by the grievance process.

The policy concerning the entitlement to the RFRG benefit is found in Compensation and Benefits Instruction 204.54 and requires a CAF member to release or transfer from the P Res sub-component of the Res F, or to release or transfer from a service that was deemed to be P Res service under a deeming provision in the policy. The Committee agreed with the IA that any type of revision to the policy would require TB approval. The Committee also noted that, even if a recommendation was made to grant the redress, the Chief of the Defence Staff would have no authority to grant the redress sought by the grievor.

Upon review, the Committee did not find the grievor's equity argument to have merit, noting that benefits such as the RFRG are developed to address the specific requirements of the CAF. Although the grievor suggested that as a fulltime Class B Reservist serving in COATS, he was doing the same work as Regular Force (Reg F) and P Res members, the Committee observed that P Res members are called upon to augment the Reg F while CAF members serving in the COATS are not. Since the RFRG benefit was intended to encourage retention and longer service in the P Res, the Committee found that the grievor was not part of the targeted group. Therefore, the Committee concluded that the grievor was not entitled to the RFRG benefit and that he had not been treated unfairly by this exclusion because he was not a member of the Res F sub-component for which it was created.

CDS Decision Summary

CDS Decision Date: 2014–06–27

The CDS agreed with the Committee's findings and recommendation that the grievance be denied.

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