Before we jump into this week’s news, we wanted to circle back to some of last week’s news that we didn’t want to get lost in all the data release excitement.
Chief Master Sgt. JoAnne S. Bass was selected as the Air Force’s next chief master sergeant, making her both the first woman and the first Asian-American to serve as the Air Force’s top enlisted leader and the highest-ranking NCO of an armed service. You can read more about Chief Bass here.
If you haven’t been keeping track, this is the second time in about a month that the Air Force has led the way with historic appointments (a few weeks ago we shared news of General Charles Q. Brown, Jr.’s appointment as Air Force chief of staff).
Speaking of reasons to celebrate (or not, amid canceled and scaled-down 4th of July celebrations), we wish you a happy, healthy, and safe 4th of July! For what it’s worth, it looks like the show will indeed go on at the 2020 Salute to America in DC, with the help of 1,700 troops, aircraft, and other support to Independence Day festivities from DOD.
If you’re a retiree and/or family member who joined the military before 2018 and are under the age of 65 (we’re talking to over 3.2 million of you), you should budget now for Tricare Select enrollment fees that will be charged starting in 2021. This will be the first-time retired beneficiaries have been assessed monthly fees for their health care in the history of Tricare Standard (now Tricare Select.)
If you’ve ever tried to PCS with a dog, you know there are all kinds of hoops to jump through. You have to worry if your dog is small enough or safe enough or the right breed enough. And the rules change from one location (and branch of service) to the next.
And for you bird-loving folks (or those of you particularly gifted in marketing), now’s your chance to submit a name for the Air Force Academy’s new Falcon mascot. She’s one month old and without a name until you help provide one. Her predecessor lived to the ripe old age of 23. Hashtag your brilliant contribution (#youracademy) to the debate to have a say in what she’s named.
Senators Gillibrand (D-NY) and Collins (R-ME) (and 20+ senators across party lines) have proposed an amendment to the NDAA that protects transgender service members with the same anti-discrimination rights as those afforded the civilian population at large, including the right to serve in the armed forces. The amendment has support from both veteran and LGBTQ+ advocacy groups alike.
Learn more about how this legislation might affect one military family directly here.
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Have a wonderful long weekend and a happy 4th!
LGBTQ Military Families Have Won Victories, But Still Have Big Fights Ahead