Happy New Year!
As we welcome 2022, we wanted to reflect on the momentous year that was 2021 and all of the hard work across the nation to support military and veteran families, caregivers, and survivors.
Below, you’ll find a brief recap of our Joining Forces efforts in 2021. As we move into the new year, we look forward to continued collaboration and progress on the needs of military on Employment and Entrepreneurship; Military Child Education; and Health and Well-Being.
Heard directly from military and veteran families during 16 base visits
- Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington
- Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington
- Marine Air Ground Task Force Training Command and Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, California
- Fort Carson, Colorado
- McLaughlin Air National Guard Base, West Virginia
- Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia
- Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England
- Pease Air National Guard Base, New Hampshire
- Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska
- Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii
- Camp Lejeune, North Carolina
- Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina
- Naval Support Activity Naples, Italy
- Fort Bragg, North Carolina
- Naval Submarine Base Groton, Connecticut
- Joint Base Fort Myer-Henderson Hall, Virginia
Announced Joining Forces priorities in April 2021 with over 100 partners and supporters in attendance virtually.
Published the Strengthening America’s Military Families report with the National Security Council in September 2021, outlining over 80 of the Biden-Harris administration’s commitments to military and veteran families, caregivers, and survivors. Commitments included:
- All Executive Agencies across the President’s Cabinet joined the Department of Defense’s Military Spouse Employment Partnership.
- To encourage military and veteran families to find recreational opportunities and increase comprehensive physical, social, mental, and spiritual fitness, the Department of the Interior created a dynamic map available on its website to show where national park access exists in proximity to military installations. This map expands on an existing resource showing where park access exists in proximity to Department of Veterans Affairs facilities.
Launched 3 interagency working groups in partnership with the National Security Council focusing on:
- Food Insecurity in Military Families
- Military and Veteran Children in Caregiving Homes
- Federal Employment for Military Spouses
Supported 11 events focused on Joining Forces priorities:
- Blue Star Families Town Hall for Military-Connected Families and the COVID-19 Vaccines
- Operation Homefront’s Military Child of the Year
- Hiring Our Heroes Military Spouse Employment Summit
- Affordable Care Act Special Enrollment Period For Veteran Families with VA and HHS
- DOD’s Military Spouse Employment Partnership 10-year Anniversary
- Military Child Education Coalition’s National Training Seminar
- VA’s Caregiver Support Program Annual Conference
- Congressional Military Families Caucus
- DOD’s Military Spouse Employment Partnership New Partner Induction
- Hidden Helpers Coalition Commitments Announcement
- Hiring Our Heroes Veteran and Military Spouse Employment Advisory Councils
Worked with over 10 partners to advance Joining Forces priorities, including:
- Military Child Education Coalition listening session with military children in high school
- Listening session with military child education partners including MCEC, Sesame Workshop, and Partners in Promise
- Military spouse employment webinar with the Department of Labor Women’s Bureau
- Launch of the Hidden Helpers coalition co-chaired by the Elizabeth Dole Foundation and Wounded Warrior Project
- Briefed federal employment partners with DOD’s Military Spouse Employment Partnership
- Announced efforts with the Interagency Veterans Advisory Council to build a community platform for military spouses in federal employment
- Worked with the National Economic Council on a Consumer Finances Roundtable: Issues Facing Military and Veteran Families
- Collaborated with the Office of Personnel Management, VA and Hiring Our Heroes for an educational webinar series on federal employment for military spouses
- Opened the Teacher Interstate Compact Kick-off with the Council of State Governments
- Connected military families with United Through Reading resources
In collaboration with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), we marked Gold Star Families Remembrance Week by sharing photographs of survivors from 50 states and 6 territories who received flags flown on the National Mall during Inauguration.
Storytelling with 4 veteran and military families, caregivers and survivors on the First Lady’s social media channels during Veteran and Military Families Month: