States that want to host Air Force installations now would have to show that their policies would bolster service programs that serve spouses and children.
“The communities where service members live and work impact readiness, retention and the satisfaction of families,” said Air Force Secretary Barbara M. Barrett on Feb. 24. “Future basing decisions made with a consistent framework will ensure optimal conditions for service members and their families.”
The policy change comes in response to concerns made by airmen and their families. Factors like good public education and the ability of spouses to sustain their careers during permanent-change-of-station moves weigh heavily upon decisions to either stay in or leave military service.
The Air Force plans to issue formal guidelines sometime this spring. ”
We know improving schools and changing licensure regulations take time, but efforts to meet the unique needs of military families are vital. States that have improved services for military families should be commended and emulated,” Barrett said.