3 Reasons to Participate in the Readiness Council

Did you know that the DoD has a Military Family Readiness Council which is supposed to meet twice a year to examine and recommend fixes for military family issues?

Don’t be embarrassed if you didn’t, because you’re not the only one. The council, which was established in 2008, hasn’t been exactly good about regularly meeting. You can read all about that and what exactly they are up to over at my story today on Military.com.

But they do have a meeting coming up on May 1 from 2:30 to 4:00 p.m. In the story I mention that you can either submit a comment to the council or attend in person (or both!).  What I don’t talk about is why that’s a good idea. So here are three reasons.

This stuff is important. The committee was formed by Congress in 2008 because lawmakers thought military families needed another set of advocates – people who were sitting down, examining programs and outreach, and making focused recommendations for what could be done better. Just because the council hasn’t met as many times as it should does not mean that this stuff isn’t important. Taking action shows that you not only know the committee exists, but you’re invested in what it does.

Get your voice on record. It can be really hard to get your comments or concerns in front of the people who have the power to do anything about them. This is a chance to do just that. By submitting it for the record you greatly increase the odds of your family issue – whatever that is – being acted upon.

Showing your face shows you care. If you happen to live in the D.C. area you can attend the council meeting in person. Even though participants cannot ask questions or do much more than just watch, placing you rear in a seat for the duration of the council meeting show that there are real, live military spouses who think this stuff is important.

Interested in submitting a comment or showing up in person? All you need to do is register with Melody McDonald by calling 571/372–0880 or emailing FamilyReadinessCouncil@osd.mil by April 19. You can also submit a written comment s by email. All statements must be submitted by 5 p.m. April 12.

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