Thursday Three Is Here!

September 24, 2020

Happy Thursday! Lots to catch you up on.
We’ve been tracking and updating you regularly on the services’ efforts to be more diverse. THIS is what getting diversity right looks like. Well done, Air Force!
MFAN’s Advisory Board members held their monthly meeting recently, and they shared some of the questions and challenges they hear from you. Like how child care is more of a struggle than ever as parents find themselves with few options in a time of COVID-19. (And how creative you are being with some of your solutions to that problem!) They talked about social security tax withholding, spouse employment, COVID testing, and more. Through our advisors and these meetings, MFAN has a pulse on the military family community and is able to best respond to your needs.
Yesterday, we shared news of an exciting new partnership that will serve military families living in Hunt Military Communities homes and beyond. You can read all about it here.
Earlier this week, MFAN Executive Director Shannon Razsadin participated in the Military Family Readiness Council (MFRC) where she was able to vote on recommendations being made to the Secretary of Defense as well as focus areas for the council for the upcoming year. She also joined our MSO/VSO (Military Service Organization/Veteran Service Organization) partners at a roundtable meeting with Undersecretary Donovan, where she made recommendations related to food insecurity and caring for the needs of the whole military family.
On the MFAN blog, here’s what you need to know from last week’s Military Family Financial Readiness Coalition (MFFRC) quarterly meeting. MFAN convenes this coalition to bring together both public and private organizations committed to the financial wellness and stability of military families. We also talk about smart investing, something future you will thank you for.
We wish an easy fast to those of you celebrating Yom Kippur this weekend (and a belated l’shana tova (happy new year). And this Sunday (and every day) we honor and hold up our Gold Star families and recognize their sacrifice on Gold Star Mother’s and Family’s Day.

Here’s what we’re hearing about this week:

Photo by Lt. Col. John Hall, 173rd Airborne Brigade 

Sleep deprived?

We’ve got some news that shouldn’t keep you up at night. Army-backed scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center have been looking at brain processes that take place during our slumber.
There’s a process that clears waste from the brain when we sleep (who knew?) And that process is impacted by changes to natural sleep rhythms. (You can click the title of this story for all the science behind it.)
Dr. Frederick Gregory, program manager for the Army Research Office’s neurophysiology of cognition initiative says, “This knowledge is crucial to developing future countermeasures that offset the deleterious effects of sleep deprivation and addresses future multi-domain military operation requirements for Soldiers to sustain performance over longer periods without the ability to rest.” Simply put—our service members are likely going to be called on for more complex missions with less sleep in the future.
We say we’re all about research, and that means there’s more sleep on the horizon.
Photo from Wikimedia Commons – Official Portrait 

Military spouse of distinction being laid to rest

This past week, the nation lost a Supreme Court justice, and our community lost a fellow military spouse and trailblazer.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is being memorialized for two days outside the Supreme Court, and then she will lie in state Friday at the Capitol. She will be the first woman to receive that honor. Per her wishes, she will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery next to her beloved husband, Martin Ginsburg, an Army veteran who died in 2010.
No additional information is available on details of the burial, but it is expected to be a private service.
Photo by Senior Airman Scott Warner, 6th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs 

If you’re a military dependent or retiree with an expired ID card that you haven’t been able to renew due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you’ve got some more time.

Back in April, guidance was issued that gave dependents and retirees access to military bases and benefits through the end of this month. Now you’ll have until June 30, 2021 to use your expired card for medical care and March 2021 for base access.

Remote ID card renewals and updates have been extended indefinitely and remotely issued cards will be good for one year from date of issuance.
Your newly 10-year-old child is going to have to wait a bit longer for that first ID card they’ve been excited about. For the time being, 14 is now the age for first IDs.
And if your ID is a Common Access Card (CAC) or Volunteer Logical Access Credentials (VoLAC), this extension doesn’t apply to you. Your grace period for expired IDs ends next week.