An amendment the House Armed Services Committee added to its defense authorization bill would be “a step forward to improving the critical bonds and relationships between our servicemembers, military families, their neighbors and fellow Americans,” said Rep. Anthony Brown (D-Md.), who drafted the amendment.

The language calls for DOD to conduct a survey of service members every other year to understand how the neighboring communities are meeting their needs in such areas as housing, family support, and diversity, equity and inclusion.

“Our efforts toward diversity and inclusion extend beyond the fence of our installations,” Brown said in a statement. “We have more work to do to ensure our military families are set up for success in every community and work with the department to ensure they have the charter and resources to conduct regular and extensive surveys on these matters to drive change.”

The amendment was added unanimously to the committee bill, which will be debated on the House floor this month.

Army photo by Pfc. Jailene Bautista