Coast Guard Correspondence

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This presentation has been uploaded for use on Andrew Welch's blog. The purpose of this course is to facilitate an in-depth discussion of items useful to new and seasoned United States Coast Guard Auxiliarists. It draws on extensive resources freely available from the USCG and USCG Auxiliary. It was originally developed by Flotilla 054-25-12 for use with that unit’s new members, but may be freely used by individual units wishing to provide such training.

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  • January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence United States Coast Guard Auxiliary
  • United States Coast Guard Auxiliary January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
  • United States Coast Guard Auxiliary January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
  • United States Coast Guard Auxiliary January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
  • Coast Guard Correspondence

    1. 1. Basic Introduction to the Coast Guard An overview presentation of Coast Guard Correspondence
    2. 2. Basic Introduction to the Coast Guard (BIC) <ul><li>The purpose of this course is to facilitate an in-depth discussion of items useful to new and seasoned Auxiliarists. It draws on extensive resources freely available from the USCG and USCG Auxiliary. It was originally developed by Flotilla 054-25-12 for use with that unit’s new members, but may be freely used by individual units wishing to provide such training. </li></ul><ul><li>Course Components: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>NASBLA-approved “Safe Boating Course” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ Basic Qualification” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ICS-100 online course/exam </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Offered by FEMA </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Character in Action by ADM James Loy (Ret.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Read and discuss </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complete an Individual Development Plan (IDP) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Do this with a coach/mentor </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Classroom lectures and discussions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Demonstrate knowledge mastery with signoffs </li></ul></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    3. 3. Core Values at the Core of of our Service <ul><li>Honor </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Integrity is our standard. We demonstrate uncompromising ethical conduct and moral behavior in all of our actions. We are loyal and accountable to the public trust.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Respect </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ We value our diverse workforce. We treat each other with fairness, dignity, and compassion. We encourage creativity through empowerment. We work as a team.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Devotion to Duty </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ We are professionals, military and civilian, who seek responsibility, accept accountability, and are committed to the successful achievement or our organizational goals. We exist to serve. We serve with pride.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Honor is to serve yourself; Respect is to serve others; Devotion to Duty is to serve your country. </li></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    4. 4. The Guardian Ethos I am America’s Maritime Guardian. I serve the citizens of the United States. I will protect them. I will defend them. I will save them. I am their Shield. For them I am Semper Paratus. I live the Coast Guard Core Values. I am a Guardian. We are the United States Coast Guard. January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    5. 5. Correspondence Basics <ul><li>This discussion addresses three correspondence: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Informal – E-mails used to communicate quickly between groups or individuals, but that still may be part of official record; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Memorandums – Internal, official communications within the Coast Guard and with other Federal Agencies; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Business Letters – Official communication outside the government, or when a more formal touch is necessary. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Remember a few important formatting issues: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Blue Ink is used to sign all original correspondence; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Standard font for memos and letters is Times New Roman; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sparingly use script, italics, bold, underline, and other non-standard formatting. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Always consult the Coast Guard Correspondence Manual, COMDTINST M5216.4 (series), when unsure of how to properly draft any correspondence. </li></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    6. 6. Standard Subject Identification Code (SSIC) <ul><li>The Standard Subject Identification Code (SSIC) is the 4-5 digit, subject-based filing system that appears on all USCG memos and business letters. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Label correspondence with one of 10 Auxiliary subject codes. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16790 – General Coast Guard Auxiliary topics </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16791 – Governing Rules and Regulations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16792 – Organizational Structure </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16793 – Board, Staff, Committee, Duties </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16794 – Training and Qualifications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16795 – Facilities; inspection and OPS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16796 – Marine Examination Program </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16797 – Public Education </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16798 – OPS and COMS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>16799 – Uniform, Insignia, Emblems, Flag </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The complete SSIC list is available in Standard Subject Identification Codes Manual, COMDTINST M5210.5 (series). </li></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    7. 7. Preparing Correspondence <ul><li>Use a template whenever possible to ensure that your correspondence complies with formatting standards. </li></ul><ul><li>Plan before you write: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consult the Correspondence Manual (Chapter 2 for memos, Chapter 3 for business letters, Appendices C and D for Models of Address. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coordinate with involved parties and exchange drafts, so that your final copy is accurate, polished, and less likely to require future revision. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be thorough and pay close attention to detail: do not distribute a poor or inaccurate product. </li></ul><ul><li>Route all correspondence, including e-mail, through the proper chain of command or leadership. </li></ul><ul><li>Retain digital copies for your records. </li></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    8. 8. Information (E-mail) Communications <ul><li>Use e-mail for most written communications where official documents are not necessary. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use to coordinate activities or production of official documents. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Remember that e-mail is not “off the record” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Informal nature of e-mail still requires proper courtesy. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Salutations: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Address military personnel and Auxiliary Commodores by rank (LT Erickson, COMO Tucker, RDML Watson, FS2 Tyson, etc). </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Address other Auxiliarists as “Mr.” or “Ms.” or by first name when given permission or communicating among friends. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complimentary Closings: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use complimentary closing “Very Respectfully,” or “v/r,” when writing to someone senior to you. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use complimentary closing “Respectfully” or “R/” when corresponding to someone junior to you </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>You can never go wrong using “Very Respectfully” for anyone . </li></ul></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    9. 9. Memorandums <ul><li>Use the memo for internal correspondence between: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Units and persons from USCG, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and other federal agencies on official matters. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Consult Correspondence Manual , Ch 2, for memo info. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use “1 Oct 2008” date format in the memo header; spell out month in the text (1 October 2008), but omit year if understood. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Names in “To,” “From,” and “Thru” should format as “F. M. Last” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sign name in blue ink above “From” line. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Include only one recipient in “To” line; use “Copy” only if needed. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use a “Thru” line when one or more offices or units outside your own are to see a memo before it reaches the addressee. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Subject is 10 words or less, all CAPITAL LETTERS. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prevent letters or memoranda from becoming too detailed: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reference – Outside document or communication you wish to site; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Enclosure – A document physically enclosed or attached. </li></ul></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    10. 10. Sample Memorandum January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence Subject, Date, SSIC restated in header on subsequent pages Enclosures, Copy, and Blind Copy (all if necessary) listed in order at memo’s end “ #” follows last line of text Each paragraph preceded by a number (1, 2, 3, etc) SSIC and date Reply to block, if needed Signature in blue ink above your name and title
    11. 11. Business Letters <ul><li>Business letters are used when corresponding with non-federal agencies or individuals, or in any situation requiring a more formal or personal touch. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use an “ATTN:” line below organization name in inside address. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Begin letter on second line below last line of the inside address. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Every copy that leaves your unit must be on proper letterhead. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Express dates in long (“May 21, 2008”) format. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cite earlier communications in the text and use “Enclosure” if necessary; there is no “Ref:” line. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complimentary closing is “Sincerely,” and begins at the center of the page on the second line below the text. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Signature block begins on the fourth line below “Sincerely”. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Names use “B. P. Jones” format, and women’s names may be clarified in parentheses such as with “(Mrs.) B. P. JONES” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>List your title or office and unit under your name. </li></ul></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    12. 12. Sample Business Letter January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence Inside address, with Attn: line SSIC and date in long form Signature block, properly aligned Copy block used if necessary Full signature block; sign name in blue ink
    13. 13. Materials <ul><li>Coast Guard Auxiliary supplies can be obtained through your Flotilla Materials Officer (FSO-MA): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>USCG Aux labeled small white and large yellow envelopes; and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Official government-paid postage. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Old stamp values will often be issued, so remember to combine values on multiple stamps to equal the current mailing cost. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Government furnished mailing supplies may be used ONLY for official business; personal use prohibited. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use properly formatted RETURN ADDRESS: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Staff Symbol (Example: FSO-PS) Flot # (Example: 054-06-07) Sender’s Street Address Sender’s City, State Zip </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use properly formatted RECEIVING ADDRESS: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Title (Rank or Mr/Ms) Name, Service (USCG, USCG Aux, etc) Recipient’s Street Address Recipient’s City, State Zip </li></ul></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    14. 14. CONVEYING CORE VALUES IN OUR CORRESPONDENCE <ul><li>Honor – Respect – Devotion to Duty </li></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence
    15. 15. Additional Resources <ul><li>The Coast Guard Correspondence Manual </li></ul><ul><ul><li>COMDTINST M5216.4 (series) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.uscg.mil/directives/cim/5000-5999/CIM_5216_4C.pdf </li></ul></ul>January 28, 2009 Coast Guard Correspondence

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