The points raised question the whole need for adult uniformed volunteer staff. It would seem it is only there and persisted with to give some allusion to a military link, that is losing it’s relevance.
We only persist with uniformed adults as the higher organisation needs to have someone to apportion blame to when things aren’t going right. For those who will no doubt come back with “but we need uniformed staff and could easily lose CIs”, think about it, and this is directed at SNCOs mainly, how often do you think that’s an officers job, but I could do it better and similarly CIs who say that’s for uniformed staff and not for me to do, but I could do it better. Both sentiments I encountered as a CO. The insignia people choose to wear constrict themselves and limit the organisation in terms of development, but only because the higher organisation lets persists with and sees certain roles as being only for those wearing uniform and particular insignia, for no real reason, other than an institutionalised thinking. I would go so far as to say do we really need ex military in all the senior HQAC roles?
A question for those going to OASC and ATF to ask could be “why do they think we need uniformed adults in the ATC”? I doubt it would they would be able to get much beyond clichéd answers.
The insignia we wear bear no relevance to whatever role(s) we undertake. The insignia we wear bear no relevance to how competent we are at doing the job and I would suggest that extends into the regular forces. I quite like being a CI again because as far as the wider organisation is concerned I’m only just able to go to the toilet without asking. Yet I could do any of the jobs and not really break into a sweat, but as a CI I have greater freedom and choice in what I do and no one can play the you’re a SNCO or Officer and expect that I just fall into line and comply. The only jobs I won’t do are Adj and H&S bod as they are just too much like work and of course Sqn Cdr.
I have and will always maintain, while the system persists, if you are looking to become a commissioned officer and not prepared to be a Sqn Cdr, why are you doing it? Of course we all know that things happen in life, but of you think that your job will evolve into something that means that being a sqn cdr is unlikely to happen; if you think that if you have children it will mean you won’t have the time to do iit; in my book you are wasting your’s and everyone else’s time. Similarly if you are doing it because you think you are going to get some kudos or community standing, you will be of no use to anyone.
Sqn Cdr is the most important job in the ATC and requires a lot of dedication and sacrifice, if you are to make a good go of it. When I was sqn cdr ( family life and work notwithstanding), I rarely missed a parade night or weekend activity and luckily my wife understood this. It was IMO something I agreed to do and would give it my time. Now however while I still do most parade nights I pick and choose weekend things.