I don’t think it’s fair that civilian contractors get to work on a military base, whether at home or at a deployed location. They typically receive more money and similar benefits but don’t have to sign up for the commitment. The only time contractors should be allowed on base is to do very specified work; otherwise, all jobs on base should be military positions. I’m not talking about working at the BX or the shoppette, those can be reserved for civilians, but finance, human resources, contracting, and information technology jobs should be set aside for military personnel.
Differences Between Military and Civilians
I worked as a civilian contractor at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. for a few months and I can tell you it was a completely different experience from active duty. I felt like a part of the military group because I had just separated from the Air Force, but I noticed a big difference between military and civilians. Civilian contractors can’t begin to understand how or why military personnel act or talk the way they do. There will always be friction and never full compatibility between the two groups, not to mention the security risks that are involved with having so many civilians work on a base.
Military members understand that they can be searched at any time and value their safety. Civilians were responsible for three out of the six major shootings that occurred on military bases between December 2012 and April 2014. That’s not to say that every civilian contractor has a vendetta against military personnel, but it’s asking for trouble to have so many people come and go on base.
At home, it seems like civilian contractors throw it in your face that they get to leave on time or aren’t forced to volunteer for anything. When they have to show for mandatory fun or wingman days, they are paid for it. They can find a new job whenever they want, so they aren’t necessarily loyal to the unit. It’s even worse that they seem to fill the “easy” positions, while the government expects the military personnel to fill the “hard” spots. Gone is the era when civilian contractors could make BIG bucks while deployed. Certain contractors were jumping at the chance to deploy because they were getting paid six figures to be there, with housing and transportation provided. Normally, I would think it’s great of someone to volunteer to do something somewhere that no one else wanted to do. But, they are doing it surrounded by military personnel who aren’t getting paid six figures to work 12-hour days, 7 days a week.
They typically aren’t held to the same standard of work that military members are held to, which makes it difficult to get the job done. Military members can be working their asses off while a contractor takes their time and doesn’t contribute. Not much can be done because many contractors are subcontracted out, with their main boss or supervisor at a different location.
In the end, it’s not fair that the military is cutting back its forces while hiring more contractors to pick up the slack. If they want to be hired for specific tasks that’s fine, but they shouldn’t have to intermingle with military members.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.