Created by an act of Congress in 1939, the U. S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is a volunteer,
civilian, uniformed service that promotes
boating safety and helps the
regular Coast Guard in a variety of operational duties.
The Auxiliary serves under the direction of the Commandant of
the U. S. Coast Guard. Members of the Auxiliary:
Auxiliarists must be U. S. citizens and at least 17 years of age. There is no upper age limit
and physical abilities are only assessed in relation to duties for which the member
volunteers (for example, one must meet Coast Guard fitness standards to serve on a
regular Coast Guard boat or aircraft). Active members of the Auxiliary include men and
women in their 90s and people with a variety of physical disabilities. There is no
minimum time commitment. A security check
is required for Auxiliarists engaged directly in operations.
- Teach boating safety classes at various sites throughout the community.
- Carry out vessel safety checks for boat owners who request them.
- Carry out safety, security, and rescue missions in Auxiliary boats and aircarft
under orders from the U. S. Coast Guard.
- Monitor the status of aids to navigation such as buoys and lights.
- Help with recruiting for the regular Coast Guard, including for the U. S. Coast Guard Academy.
- Serve alongside members of the regular U. S. Coast Guard at small boat stations,
administrative units, cutters, and air facilities, carrying out
duties that include radio watch
standing, participating in land patrols of harbor areas, standing watch at entrance gates to Coast Guard facilities, assisting with air patrols,
engaging in environmental monitoring, serving as boat crew members, and other tasks.
Auxiliarists proudly wear the same uniforms as members of the regular Coast Guard, but
with distinctive markings: silver instead of gold buttons, shoulder boards bearing a
prominent "A", name tags that are blue on white instead of white on blue, and so on.
Since 9-11 the Auxiliary has become an increasingly important component of Team Coast Guard,
with many enthusiastic and appreciative supporters among the boating public and
within the regular service, from Seamen
to Admirals. You can serve your country
by joining the Auxiliary.
Click here to visit the national U. S. Coast Guard