SDF Poll 2

Poll – Would a Major Uniform Change Affect Your Continued Service In The State Defense Force

A few weeks ago we informed you that The National Guard Bureau is re-evaluating CNGBI 5500.01, which is the directive that specifies National Guard Interaction with State Defense Forces. The re-evaliation recommends drastically changing each State Defense Forces uniform to one that would contrast the current uniform standard. Currently most State Defense Forces wear The Operational Camouflage Pattern (OCP), the same as The US Army National Guard. However, there are key distinctions that set them apart. For instance, State Defense Forces wear nametapes that reflect their specific state affiliation, such as “Texas State Guard,” in place of the standard “US ARMY” inscription found on the uniforms of U.S. Army and National Guard soldiers. Additionally, instead of the U.S. flag patch typically worn on the right shoulder, almost all State Defense Forces display their respective state flags on their uniforms.

The proposed National Guard directive change would move all State Defense Forces to a new type of uniform, they could continue to be able to wear The OCP uniform however the rank, nametapes and cover (hat) would be a solid red cover. This drastic change would undoubtedly make State Defense Force soldiers stand out among their National Guard brothers and sisters. It might also prompt public curiosity and raise questions about the identity and authority of these troops. Such a distinction becomes particularly critical during state activations, where State Defense Forces are often at the forefront, aiding in evacuation procedures, managing shelters, and engaging in various missions that involve direct interaction with citizens. The visibility and recognition of these forces are essential in these situations, as it impacts their effectiveness and the public’s trust in their legitimacy and role.

In addition to this recommendation The National Guard Bureau suggested if State Defense Forces don’t wear The OCU, they would recommend the following uniform:

This alternative uniform would represent a significant departure from traditional military attire, effectively removing all conventional military symbols from each member’s uniform. Such a change would visually align the members more with civilian volunteers, contrasting sharply with the established mission, historical significance, and intended role of the State Defense Forces. This evolution in their uniform could lead to a fundamental shift in how these forces are perceived, both by the public and within the broader context of national security and emergency response.

The National Guard Bureau is currently finalizing the directive and working with The States Adjutant Generals (Senior National Guard General of The State) to implement its recommendations.

We want to get your feedback, if such a proposal is published by The National Guard Bureau and supported by your states Adjutant General, would you re-enlist in your State Defense Force?

  • Yes, I would continue serving with those uniform modifications
  • No, that would be the end of my continued service in The State Defense Forces

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