Many of us do not realize that almost 50% of the Nation’s defense forces are in the National Guard and the Reserve Component. These men and women maintain their commitment to the Armed Forces while also managing their civilian career. This requires a strong partnership between our private sector employers and our military leaders. The Department of Defense office of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) guides that partnership. Last week, Comcast NBCUniversal reaffirmed our commitment to this partnership and our support of our military employees and our military community.

By signing the statement of support, we reaffirmed our commitment to hire and retain employees who are members of the National Guard and Reserve. As a company, we do more than just make commitments—we proudly provide our National Guard and Reserve employees with annual paid time off for military training along with a pay differential and continued benefits when they are called to full time military service for extended training or deployments. Our Military Concierge service makes it easy for our employees, managers, and military families to balance their civilian and military commitments.

I was honored to witness Neil Smit and M. Alex Baird, Principal Deputy Director of Family and Employer Programs and Policy, sign a ESGR Statement of Support on behalf of Comcast NBCUniversal. We were joined by Undersecretary of the Army the Honorable Patrick Murphy and Sergeant Major of the Army Daniel Dailey in addition to Stephen Austin, Assistant Chief of Army Reserve, and Major General Walt Lord, Military Executive, Reserve Forces Policy Board. We were also joined by Brian Roberts, Chairman and CEO, Comcast Corporation, and Dave Watson, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Comcast Cable, leaders who are committed to our efforts in the Military Community.

I am proud of the support that Comcast NBCUniversal provides to our National Guard and Reserve employees. We truly recognize the value these men and women bring and appreciate the leadership and expertise they gain through their military service.