Editor’s Note: The “People First” section is compiled from information from the Air Force Personnel Center, TRICARE, 56th Force Support Squadron, Airman and Family Readiness Flight, Veterans Affairs, the civilian personnel office and armed forces news services. For the complete story, go to the web address listed at the end of the story.
AF to open remaining combat positions to women
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey recently announced the rescission of the 1994 Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule for women and that the Defense Department plans to remove gender-based barriers to service.
“Women have shown great courage and sacrifice on and off the battlefield, contributed in unprecedented ways to the military’s mission and proven their ability to serve in an expanding number of roles,” Panetta said. “The department’s goal in rescinding the rule is to ensure that the mission is met with the best-qualified and most capable people, regardless of gender.”
While 99 percent of Air Force positions are currently open to women, Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III said the service will now pursue opening the final 1 percent.
“2013 marks the twentieth anniversary of the DOD allowing women to serve as combat pilots,” Welsh said. “By rescinding the 1994 Direct Ground Combat Definition and Assignment Rule, we can pursue integrating women into the seven remaining Air Force career fields still closed, all associated with special operations. We’re focused on ensuring America’s Air Force remains capable and ready with the best-qualified people serving where we need them.”
Military kids website helps parents, educators
The Defense Department website for military children has added new features to help parents and educators explain difficult topics of the military lifestyle to children.
Since its launch in January 2012, MilitaryKidsConnect.org has served more than 125,000 visitors and won five industry excellence awards. To mark the one-year anniversary, the website added new content designed for children, parents and educators, officials said.
The new features include:
• Military culture videos and lesson plans for teachers, school counselors, and educators to better understand the differences between military and civilian youth
• Graphic novels and mini-documentaries by military kids sharing their experiences
• New modules for children and parents on handling grief, loss and physical injury
The website, created by the DOD’s National Center for Telehealth and Technology, known as T2, uses innovative ways to help military youth cope with the unique strains of military life. In addition to disruptions from parents deploying to assignments away from home, military children are affected by moving frequently, changing schools and making new friends. They also have to live with readjustment issues when a parent returns from deployments. These issues may include post-traumatic stress and physical disabilities.
Examination fee implemented for pets shipped to Europe
An examination fee of 55 Euro per pet will be implemented Feb. 1, for all nonEuropean Union citizens who import a pet to Germany.
The Kaiserslautern County Administration implemented the European Union Ordinance #998/2003, which regulates the importing of dogs, cats and other pets into or throughout the European Union.
Upon arrival into the country, pets will be examined by the veterinarian near the passenger terminal baggage claim area. These examinations are conducted by the county veterinary office for German General Customs.
There will be only a credit card reader available at the terminal to pay the fee. Cash and debit cards will not be accepted. The fee will be the military member’s responsibility and will not be reimbursed on a travel voucher.
Military personnel flying into Frankfurt International Airport, Germany, will no longer be exempt from the charges associated with importing a pet. The State of Hessen charges 35 Euro per accompanied pet, 55 Euro for an unaccompanied pet, plus an additional 50 percent if the pet arrives on a weekend or holiday.
ACC seeks air liaison officers
Eligible officers interested in air liaison officer duty have until Feb. 7 to complete and submit their application package to Air Combat Command, Air Force Personnel Center officials said.
ALO duty is open to men and women who are active-duty crossflow candidates, interservice transfer applicants, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve, and Reserve Officer Training Corps and U.S. Air Force Academy cadets scheduled to graduate in 2013 and 2014, said Lt. Col. Mark Jablow, ACC Close Air Support Operations.
Interested officers must be hazardous duty volunteers, and eligible for a top secret security clearance. Active-duty candidates must be released from their career field by their AFPC functional manager, as well. Interservice transfer opportunities are extremely limited and require an exception to policy, Jablow said.