From: MR Brett Mitchell On Behalf Of Honours and Awards
Sent: Sunday, 17 June 2012 2:25 PM
To: 'David Vinen'

Australian Operational Service Medal

Dear Mr Vinen

Thank you for your email of 8 June 2012 concerning the Australian Operational Service Medal (OSM).

The creation of the OSM arose out of the 2007/08 Defence Honours, Awards and Commendations Policy Review. The intent is for the OSM to be awarded for new ADF operations, instead of the Australian Active Service Medal(AASM) and Australian Service Medal (ASM).

There will be two variants - one for ADF members, and one for eligible civilians who deploy on operations.

Under Regulation 3(3)(b) of the OSM regulations, the Governor-General 'must not' make a declaration about an operation unless 'the operation is not an operation for which recognition for an award ... already exists'.

This means that the OSM cannot be used to recognise operations that are already recognised with an award. Therefore, the OSM will not apply to past operations in countries like Somalia, Rwanda and Cambodia because recognition is already provided through the Australian Active Service Medal or Australian Service Medal.

There will be limited retrospectively applied to the OSM. Principally this will be for civilians who have deployed on operations in recent years, but who have not been eligible for military awards.

Recognition of service on border protection operations such as Operation RESOLUTE is a matter that remains to be resolved.

Yours sincerely

Brett Mitchell
Policy Research Officer
Directorate of Honours and Awards