Republican leaders on the House Armed Services Committee released military family readiness legislation they want to see included in the next National Defense Authorization Act.
“Servicemembers shouldn’t have to worry about whether their next duty station can support the medical needs of their family or whether they will be able to afford safe, reliable childcare,” said Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), the committee’s senior Republican.
According to a summary, the bill would, among other provisions:
- Establish a formal definition for the term “family readiness” to help standardize support programs across the services;
- Start a pilot program to help military spouses begin careers in national security;
- Require 24-hour child care at some facilities with a high concentration of shift workers;
- Formalize a DOD policy to track opioid prescriptions; and
- Implement better communications with military families.
“This effort is an extension of the bipartisan family readiness reforms the House Armed Services Committee has championed in the past, including a new blended retirement system, reforms to the military healthcare system, and repeated reforms of the widow’s tax,” said Thornberry, who released the legislative language with Rep. Trent Kelly (R-Miss.), the top Republican on the military personnel subcommittee.
Army photo by Sgt. Robert Mercado