Joint Meritorious Unit Award
Defense Secretary Weinberger established The Joint Meritorious Unit Award in June of 1981which makes it one of the newer medals of America. These awards are among the few military medals the Department of Defense issues, and are the only unit award they give. That makes these military ribbons one of the rarest unit citations. These US military medals are the unit equivalent of the Defense Superior Service Medal. They are presented to joint units or combined activities where direction comes through Unified or Combined Command channels, or where a joint mission is pursued under the direction of the Secretary of Defense, or the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, or their designated commander.
The general order of precedence that has been established for the proper display of all military medals and ribbons places the Joint Meritorious Unit Award just below the Presidential Unit Citation, equivalent to the Army Valorous Unit Award, the Navy Unit Commendation, the Air Force Gallant Unit Citation, and the Coast Guard Unit Commendation, and just above the Meritorious Unit Commendation. Multiple awards are denoted by Oak Leaf Cluster devices. A Unit Banner has also been approved for display.
The Joint Meritorious Unit Award is generally available as a military ribbon in all five branches of service and is available as traditional full size military ribbons, lapel pins and as a unit banner. Like most military awards, it can be worn as traditional slide-on, full size military ribbons. In more recent times the sleek new ultra thin military ribbons have garnered a wide following with military personnel who have realized the importance of always looking their best to enhance their chances of advancement in their respective military services.