By Nicholas Sabula
In about three weeks I’ll once again join nine other military family representatives from all services for the next next DoD Advisory Panel on Special Needs Sept. 13 in Alexandria, Va.
Two important aspects of the day include an update from DoD leaders on improvements to the system and input to what’s needed for our families. The advice our panel members provide is terse in many aspects, elaborated in others, but always specifically focused on what our military families really need.
Representatives from each of the services, TRICARE Management Activity, Department of Defense Education Activity and others have attended the last two panels.
How would you like the chance to have your voice heard at the DoD and service level in regard to EFMP and other issues? Here’s your chance.
If you have challenges, ideas or answers to the way special needs care is addressed across the military, I want to hear from you. Your stories are important. Specific examples of what is broke AND what you think needs to be done to fix it.
This call for input is meant for all DoD special needs families.
I am a messenger for your concerns. While I’m father of a child who happens to have autism, I represent all disabilities, all service concerns and bring your voice to the table.
In the next few days, the 2nd Annual Military Families Special Needs Survey will go online and run through Sept. 10.
Last year I created an online survey to draw as much feedback as possible. The unofficial survey had over 260 people respond. A total of 2,138 written responses were provided during the survey, or roughly 38,000 words of feedback. A 100-page printout of all data was given to DoD’s Office of Special Needs staff during the Sept. 27, 2011 panel. You can view the results of that survey here.
You can also go here and enter your open comments and suggestions directly before that time. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you know other military families dealing with any special needs issues, please share this information with them.
Help make special needs support processes better. Together we can make a difference.