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Activation & Deployments

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ARC Member Activation Overview

Per AFI 10-401, the two types of activation under Air Reserve Component utilization include Volunteerism and Involuntary Recall to Active Duty.

Under volunteerism, SecAF is allowed to place a member of a Reserve Component under SecAF jurisdiction on Active Duty, or retain an Airman on Active Duty, with the consent of that member. The Air Force commonly uses the term “volunteer” to refer to Air Reserve Component Airmen activated voluntarily under Title 10 U.S. Code 12301(d), which provides the capability to expand the active force rapidly and efficiently, reduce the Active Component tempo, and mitigate the need for mobilization.

The Air Force applies the term mobilization to members involuntarily activated under mobilization statutes without the member’s consent, including Title 10 US Code 12301(a), 12302, 12304, 12304a, or 12304b. Reserve members are only mobilized if there is a validated need, a sourcing solution requiring a Reserve member, and an approved legal authority as specified in Title 10 US Code.

IMAs are primarily activated to support their unit of assignment. IMA usage outside the unit of assignment must be approved IAW AFI 10-401 and by the first general officer (GO) in both chains of command. Note that 12304b is not applicable to IMAs.

For benefits and entitlements associated with volunteerism and mobilization, click here.

Involuntary Recall to Active Duty (Mobilization) Resources

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