The Auxiliary was formed by congressional act in 1939 as the Coast Guard Reserve. 14 U.S.C. 822 It aids the Coast Guard in its non-military, non-law-enforcement tasks, such as search and rescue, aids to navigation maintenance, environmental protection, public boater education, and private and fishing vessel examination.
Teams of Auxiliarists act in these mission areas under Coast Guard orders, and individual Auxiliarists supplement Active Duty and Reserve Coast Guard units. Auxiliarists under orders operate with the authority and under the direction of the United States Coast Guard. We wear Coast Guard uniforms with specific devices indicating that we are members of the auxiliary.