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Hot Topics

Listed below will be some of the hottest topics for the Family Readiness groups, or there will be direct links to powerpoint slides, pdfs, excel spreadsheets, or word documents, etc. of interest:


•  Council Puts Military Families First
•  Hagel Issues Suicide Prevention Month Message
•  8 Keys to Success: Supporting Veterans, Military and Military Families on Campus
•  Expert: Sexual assault is not a gender issue
•  Westphal reinforces contributions, resiliency of Army's civilian workforce


•  First Lady, Dr. Biden Vow to Continue "Joining Forces"
•  DOD Offers Non-medical Counseling to Troops, Families
•  Army Emergency Relief Scholarships
•  More Scholarships for Military Children
•  Tax Preparation without a Headache

Operation Military Kids (OMK) Summer 2012 Camp Schedule

Army Child, Youth & School Services programs are offered through Army Garrisons, National Guard Family State Program offices and Army Reserve Family Programs.

Through a network of National, State and Local Partners, Operation: Military Kids provides access to youth programs and support services where military children live. OMK Partners organize special events, provide transportation to military kids to sporting events or other extracurricular activities, and participate in the Hero Pack initiative.

OSD/OMK Summer Camps will be offered in selected states in summer 2012.

Check for fun opportunities view all the upcoming camps:

Army Budget Director Maj. Gen. Phillip E. McGhee and Army Budget Deputy Director Barbara L. Bonessa brief reporters on President Barack Obama's fiscal year 2013 defense budget proposal at the Pentagon, Feb. 13, 2012. 2012 Army Family Action Plan Conference
WASHINGTON, February 14, 2012, By Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service, Lisa Daniel, American Forces Press Service

The military will reduce its end strength by 5.5 percent over five years, while preserving military pay and benefits for current members and investing in technology and systems to counter future threats, according to Pentagon budget documents released yesterday.

The fiscal year 2013 proposal calls for a $525.4 billion base budget, down $5.2 billion from the current year, and $88.5 billion for overseas contingency operations, down $26.6 billion.

The proposal follows the military strategy guidance President Barack Obama released last month that provides a transition from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to a more agile and flexible military that responds to broad challenges and maintains global superiority while also helping to reduce the national deficit, officials said.


DOD photo by Elaine Sanchez

Deanie Dempsey, wife of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army General Martin E. Dempsey, urges a group of military spouses to share their ?extraordinary? stories with the American public while speaking at 2012 Military Spouse Summit in Arlington, Virginia,
March 3, 2012.
DOD photo by Elaine Sanchez

Mrs. Dempsey Urges Spouses to Share ?Amazing? Stories
ARLINGTON, Va., March 5, 2012, By Elaine Sanchez, American Forces Press Service

Military spouses have amazing stories that all Americans need to hear, the wife of the nation?s top military officer said here March 3.

?I want all of America to see what I see -- this is a group that can be an incredible source of good,? Deanie Dempsey, wife of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, told a group of military spouses attending 2012 Military Spouse Summit.

This past decade of war has challenged military families in ways no one could have anticipated, Dempsey noted. Yet, spouses have remained steadfast -- serving and sacrificing alongside their service members.

?As Marty and I have traveled around, we have been personally touched by your commitment and your sense of service to your country,? she told the spouses.

As a nearly 36-year military spouse who has moved 21 times, Dempsey said, she understands spouses? challenges, whether it?s health care, education or employment. She?s also a military mom -- all three of her children served in the Army, and her son remains on active duty.

When it comes to issues such as employment, military spouses aren?t seeking special treatment -- just equal treatment, she said.

The Joining Forces campaign is making strides in its efforts to aid military families More...

Military Community and Family Policy (MC&FP) Weekly eNewsletter
The Military Community and Family Policy (MC&FP) Weekly eNewsletter, provides you with access to the blog post of Robert L. Gordon III, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Military Community and Family Policy), the latest Quality of Life news and information from the Department of Defense, and dates for upcoming Guard and Reserve onsite sales.

This link:, will open up the MC&FP Weekly eNewsletter in your browser. If the link above does not work, please copy and paste the entire link into your browser window. A PDF version of the newsletter is also available for download from the link above.

Military Community and Family Policy
Office of the Secretary of Defense
Providing policy, tools, and resources to further enhance the quality of life of service members and their families.

Proposal Would Expand Support for Military Caregivers
WASHINGTON, Jan. 30, 2012, By Elaine Sanchez, American Forces Press Service

First Lady Michelle Obama today announced a series of measures intended to increase the nation's support for caregivers of wounded, ill and injured service members.

Joined by Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis and senior military leaders, Obama announced the Labor Department's proposal to expand military family leave protections under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

These proposed rules will, in part, enable more military family members to take the time they need to care for their loved ones without fear of career repercussions, the first lady said.

"We want to recognize the extraordinary dedication, sacrifice and service of our nation's caregivers, not simply with words, but with deeds," Obama told the audience gathered at the Labor Department here. "These are men and women and children who will do anything for their loved ones, no matter the cost, no matter the sacrifice, no matter the consequences."

The Labor Department's proposed expansions of the Family and Medical Leave Act will help more caregivers of troops and veterans tend to their wounded loved ones, Solis explained. FMLA, enacted in 1993, enables eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons.

"Many service members come home stressed, ill and injured," Solis said. "They need attention, care and support from the people that love them the most. And we've got an obligation as a nation to make that possible."

The proposal will, in part:

  • Extend the 26-week unpaid leave entitlement to family members caring for recent veterans with a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of duty, including conditions that may arise up to five years after leaving the military;
  • Allow family members to take time off from work before, during or after a spouse, child or parent's deployment to tend to service-related matters, such as military briefings or making financial and legal arrangements; and
  • Increase the amount of time an employee may take to spend with a loved one who is on rest or recuperation leave from five days to up to 15 days.


Deanie Dempsey Dishes With Spouses
June 20, 2011, By Molly Hayden, U.S. Army Garrison Grafenwoehr Public Affairs Office

During a visit to U.S. Army Garrison Grafenwoehr, June 2, Deanie Dempsey, wife of Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, met with more than 20 Family Readiness Group leaders of the 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment and 172nd Infantry Brigade to discuss issues pertaining to the military family.


Innovative Sexual Assault Training Debuts
November 24, 2011, Fort Lee, Va.

The Army has rolled out the latest phase of its five-year plan to eradicate sexual violence within its ranks.

"Achieving Cultural Change" is the third of four phases under the "I A.M. Strong" campaign launched in 2008 to tackle sexual harassment and sexual assault issues through training, awareness and intervention.


ACT NOW - 2012 Scholarships for Military Families

A list of several organizations offering scholarships and educational opportunities for military families for 2012. Deadlines and eligibility listed on each website.

Joining Forces

Joining Forces provides ways for all Americans to step up and show their gratitude to our service members and their families. Through this effort, Mrs. Obama and Dr. Biden ask Americans to do more for those who have done so much for us. They are highlighting outstanding American citizens, communities, and businesses that are supporting our troops and making commitments to serve our nation?s military families. They are asking Americans to get involved in any way they can.

More ...


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