Posted on May 14, 2004
FT. CAMPBELL-U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) today praised the launch of "USA4MilitaryFamiles" a new national collaboration between state governments and the Department of Defense (DoD) to improve the quality of life for military families, with special consideration given to Guard and reserve families who may not live near a military installation. Alexander also recognized the importance of a memorandum of understanding between the National Military Child Education Coalition and 140 school districts across the country, including Montgomery County. The pact will make it easier for children of military parents to transition to new schools when they move from one military installation to another, especially graduating seniors who often face challenges in meeting graduation requirements. "As our soldiers, guardsmen and reservists are away fighting to defend our freedom, it is our responsibility to make sure we help take care of their families here at home," Alexander said during the news conference at Ft. Campbell. "Increasingly frequent deployments, long separations, recurrent moves, inconsistent housing, and issues for spouses who work are just a few of the unique hardships consistently faced by the families of those in uniform. I look forward to working with the governor's office and the Department of Defense on this state-level initiative to identify state and local solutions to the challenges facing our military families." As part of "USA4MilitaryFamilies," governors will hold summits with DoD officials and their state counterparts to look at resources and services that can be provided to improve the quality of life of service members and their families. In July, Alexander will hold a hearing - "Military Parents Raising Children: The States' Response" - to learn more about what states are doing in response to the needs of military families. Alexander was joined by Maj. Gen. David H. Petraeus and his wife, Holly Petraeus; Maj. Gen. Thomas R. Turner II and his wife, Susan Turner; Col. Ike Osborne, Tennessee National Guard; George Schaefer, Office of the Undersecretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness); Dr. Sandra Husk, Montgomery County Schools; and Lt. Gen. (retired) Pete Taylor, National Military Child Education Coalition.