Military Report - Week of October 28, 2013

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Military Report - Week of October 28, 2013

#1 Postby boardman » Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:40 am

Military Report - Week of October 28, 2013

AF Fitness Assessment Changes
The Air Force has released further guidance on the implementation of several changes to the physical assessment test, which took place Oct. 21. The new guidance includes additions to the body composition component of the fitness assessment, delegation of appeal authority for fitness assessments and changes to the walk test. According to the new policy, those taking only the abdominal circumference component of the fitness assessment will pass with the component minimum score as opposed to the composite 75 score as was previously required. Males must now achieve an abdominal circumference of 39 inches, which is also the component minimum. Females must now achieve an abdominal circumference of 35.5 inches, which is also their component minimum. Additionally, to pass the BMI screen, regardless of age or gender, the Airman must achieve a BMI equal to or less than 25 kg/m2. The wing commander or equivalent will be the first appeal authority for fitness assessments. For more information, contact your unit fitness program monitor, your fitness assessment cell, or visit the (http://www.afpc.af.mil/affitnessprogram/) Air Force Fitness Program webpage.
For military-grade fitness programs and tips, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-fitness/) Military.com Fitness section.


Combined Federal Campaign Resumes
The annual Combined Federal Campaign charity drive, interrupted by the 16-day federal government shutdown, has resumed. According to the campaign's website, CFC is the world's largest and most successful annual workplace charity campaign, with almost 200 CFC campaigns throughout the country and overseas raising millions of dollars each year. Pledges made by federal civilian, postal and military donors during the Sept. 1 through Dec. 15 campaign season support eligible nonprofit organizations that provide health and human service benefits throughout the world. For more information, visit the Combined Federal Campaign website at (http://www.opm.gov/combined-federal-campaign/) www.opm.gov/combined-federal-campaign/.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


New Curriculum for Separating Troops
The Defense Department continues to assist servicemembers and their families in preparing for the transition to civilian life with a new virtual curriculum. The Transition Assistance Program has evolved to now include the Transition GPS virtual curriculum on the (http://jko.jfcom.mil/) Joint Knowledge Online portal (JKO). Servicemembers can improve their job search skills, find out about Veterans Administration benefits, learn how to find and apply to a college or university that fits their goals, or how to start their own business by accessing the new Transition GPS virtual curriculum. Servicemembers do not have to be enrolled in the TAP class to use this website. Any servicemember can log in and use the new website, even years before they make the decision to transition to civilian life.
For more military transition guides and tips, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-transition) Military.com Transition Center.


State Farm Committed to Hiring Veterans
Start your civilian career with State Farm. As a global persified technology and industrial leader they can provide endless opportunity and a career path that lets you choose where you want to be. (http://www.military.com/jobs-in/employe ... RC=mrvr.nl) Read More.


Navy Observes Energy Action Month
President Obama recently declared October as (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-off ... month-2013) National Energy Action Month. The Navy launched a video this month that describes a new information campaign to inspire energy behavior change and awareness among the Navy workforce. The campaign's theme, "Did You Know?" highlights the importance of energy to the Navy's mission. The video can be viewed (http://youtu.be/1D8JFu-gpzg) here. How are you taking action to save energy? What does energy resiliency mean to you? Join the conversation at #NavyEnergy. Do you have ideas on how the Navy can take action to save energy? The new (http://dld.bz/collab-lab) Collab Lab tool and webpage, developed by Navy Warfare Development Center, allows individuals and institutions to submit, comment and vote on ideas submitted by others. For more information and resources, visit the (http://dld.bz/energy-action-month) Navy Energy Action Month webpage.
For more Navy news, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Vets Invited to March in Vet Day Event
Come one, come all, to (http://www.americasparade.org/) America's Parade, the largest Veterans Day event -- that is the message from Sean Powers, coordinator for the American Legion Veterans Day Parade contingent in New York City, where the Nov. 11 event is held. "We want to have the most people we can marshal from throughout the Legion Family," said Powers, commander of American Legion New York County. The theme of this year's parade is military women. Participants are encouraged to wear their Legion caps during the 1.3-mile march. Those interested in marching with the Legion Family delegation should send an (http://www.legion.org/veteransday/21694 ... -day-event) email stating their intent to (mailto:parade@americanlegion.com) parade@americanlegion.com. Powers will post details about the (http://www.americanlegion.com/_/Parade.html) Legion contingency as they become available. For more information, visit America's Parade website at (http://www.americasparade.org/) www.americasparade.org.
For more on Veterans Day events and discounts, visit the (http://www.military.com/veterans-day) Military.com Veterans Day page.


Retirement Planning for All Ages
Regardless of your age, certain strategies can raise the odds that you'll reach your retirement goal. (http://www.military.com/money/retirement/?ESRC=mrvr.nl) Read More.


Stamps to Honor Medal of Honor Recipients
The U.S. Postal Service will issue special Medal of Honor stamps on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. The first side of the four-page design highlights 12 photographs of the last living recipients of the Medal of Honor from World War II. The photographs surround two forever stamps. One stamp features a photograph of the Navy version of the Medal of Honor; the other stamp features a photograph of the Army version of the Medal of Honor. The two center pages list the names of all 464 recipients of the Medal of Honor from World War II. The remaining 18 stamps are located on the back page. To learn more about the stories behind the new stamps, visit the (http://www.uspsstamps.com/blog/2013/10/18/) U.S. Postal Service Blog.


Military Parenting Website Debuts
Servicemembers who deploy or are otherwise separated from their families due to mission needs now have an online resource allowing them to hone their parenting skills as they reconnect with their children. The launch of the Parenting for Servicemembers and Veterans website at (http://www.militaryparenting.org) www.militaryparenting.org offers comprehensive and free computer-based training from a servicemember's perspective on parenting and building strong relationships with their children. The website consolidates and simplifies information that was previously accessible only across multiple resources.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


$1,000,000 Protection: from Only $41 a Month
Your family's future is important. Could your family survive financially if the unthinkable happened? Prepare your family with $1 Mil quality coverage (http://www.military.com/insurance/?lpid ... =mr1028.nl) from only $41 a month.


AF Supplemental Promotion List
The October Air Force enlisted supplemental promotion list slated for release Oct. 10 was released Oct. 17. To see the list, visit the (https://mypers.af.mil) myPers website and enter "supplemental promotion list" in the search window. Also, the November supplemental release will be Nov. 7, rather than Nov. 14. Senior raters with master sergeant through chief master sergeant-selects will receive email notifications Nov. 6.
For more Air Force news, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Veterans Virtual Career Fair
Help move your career to the next level and find your next job at this virtual event. (http://www.veteransvirtualcareerfair.com/?ESRC=mrvr.nl) Register now to complete your profile, which can be used to connect with employers when the fair begins.


Warrior Resilience Conference
While the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury frequently hosts webinars, the recent fifth annual Warrior Resilience Conference hosted in August was the center's first large-scale virtual conference. There were more than 1,200 registered participants. Subject matter experts from across the country examined the relationship between physical and psychological resilience with presentations on the factors of sleep and fatigue, nutrition, exercise, family resilience, the role of chaplains in mental health care, post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. Information on access all 31 sessions of the conference online are available on the (http://www.dcoe.mil/blog/13-10-16/Warri ... nline.aspx) Defense Centers of Excellence Blog. Conference content can be accessed through December 13, 2013. If you have questions, please contact the conference team at (mailto:warriorV2013@gmail.com) warriorV2013@gmail.com.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


Navy Kids Plan for Zombie Escape
Navy children ages five to 17 years old are invited to make a Zombie Escape Plan. Ready Navy Kids are invited to draw, write out, or create a video of their Zombie Escape plan and send it to (mailto:readynavy@navy.mil) readynavy@navy.mil . Winning plans will be displayed on the Ready Navy website in November. Children are encouraged to work with their parents to make a plan that includes: (1) a written escape plan, (2) meeting places both inside and outside the neighborhood, (3) a communication plan to contact each other if separated, (4) plans for family pets, and (5) an emergency supply kit. Be a Ready Navy Kid! Click for more information on the (http://www.ready.navy.mil/) Zombie challenge and disaster preparedness, and follow (https://twitter.com/ReadyNavy) @ReadyNavy.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


AF Tuition Assistance Returns
As a result of the passed continuing resolution legislation, the Air Force is in the process of returning operations to normal pre-shutdown status, to include the reinstatement of military tuition assistance. The continuing resolution will fund the Air Force under the fiscal year 2013 sequester funding levels, which will enable the reinstatement of MilTA for Airmen. Effective immediately all Military Tuition Assistance applications for courses starting on or after Oct. 17 may be submitted. All previously approved MilTA requests for courses which began on or after Oct. 17 are reinstated. The Air Force policy for courses that started Oct. 1-16 will be distributed as soon as it is available. Airmen should continue monitoring of the U.S. Air Force website at (http://www.af.mil) www.af.mil and the Air Force Virtual Education Center (AFVEC) on the (https://www.my.af.mil/) Air Force portal, for the most up to date information. For more information on the government reopening, visit (http://www.af.mil/AboutUs/GovernmentShutdown.aspx) www.af.mil/AboutUs/GovernmentShutdown.aspx.
For more updates on military benefits programs, visit the (http://militaryadvantage.military.com) Military Advantage blog.


Federal Employees Get Retro Pay
Civilian Air Force employees who were furloughed during the government shutdown were authorized to return to work Oct. 17, 2013. Civilians, including those who returned to work earlier this month, will be retroactively paid but are urged not to access the pay system, as mass amounts of website logins could potentially crash the system. Limiting access to the Time and Attendance website to only timekeepers and certifiers allows the Air Force to quickly update the system so all civilian Airmen can get paid in full. More information will be provided as it becomes available. For more information, read the (http://www.af.mil/Portals/1/documents/n ... ivepay.pdf) Memorandum for Correcting Civilian Time and Attendance for Authorized Retroactive Pay webpage and read the (http://www.af.mil/News/ArticleDisplay/t ... tions.aspx) Government Shutdown: Frequently Asked Questions webpage.
For more updates on pay and military benefits programs, visit the (http://militaryadvantage.military.com) Military Advantage blog.


Tuition Assistance Resumes
Last week the services began offering tuition assistance following the government shutdown. A DoD official stated that there are no plans to cut (http://www.military.com/education/money ... rview.html) military tuition assistance back "substantially." However, the DoD will continue to look at TA in the context of overall budget cuts and there may be some "trims" to the important education program. This is on top of the recent TA program administrative policies which were changed to limit use of the TA in 2014. (http://militaryadvantage.military.com/2 ... dget-cuts/) Read the Military Advantage Blog for more details.


AF Sets Same Sex Marriage Leave Policy
The Air Force recently published guidance clarifying the service's policy on implementation of same sex marriage. The guidance clarifies how Airmen may be eligible for administrative absence to obtain legal marriage, if the state or country they are stationed in does not yet recognize same sex marriage. In order to be granted administrative absence, the Airman must be located more than 100 miles from a U.S. state, the District of Columbia or other jurisdictions that allows the couple to marry. According to the policy, if two servicemembers are part of a couple and desire to get married, both members may be granted an administrative absence if qualified. Members may be granted up to seven days if stationed in the continental United States, and up to 10 days if stationed overseas. In order to determine eligibility, refer to (http://static.e-publishing.af.mil/produ ... 6-3003.pdf) AFI 36-3003, Military Leave Program.
For more Air Force news, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


AF Post-Shutdown EPME Policy
The Air Force is giving three options to the 900 Airmen who were sent back to their home station while in the process of completing their respective Enlisted Professional Military Education course, as a result of the government shutdown. Under the first option, Airmen who returned before completing academic requirements can elect to attend the full in-residence course during Fiscal 2014. As a second option, Airmen will have the choice to enroll in the available EPME Distance Learning course to satisfy all EPME requirements. The final option is for members who completed at least 50 percent of the required academic days (i.e. 14 for NCO Academy and 12 for ALS) can choose to return and resume their respective EPME course at the point which they departed. The Air Force Personnel Center will contact each Airman and explain the three options available to them.
For more updates on military benefits programs, visit the (http://militaryadvantage.military.com) Military Advantage blog.


Air Force Holiday Radio Special
Country superstar Blake Shelton shares his favorite, and at times emotional, family holiday memories on this year's "Red, White and Air Force Blue Christmas" radio special. Produced by Air Force Recruiting Service, the one-hour program features songs from Shelton's 2012 Christmas album "Cheers, It's Christmas." The program also gives listeners an up-close and personal glimpse into the life of the reigning Country Music Association's Entertainer and Male Vocalist of the Year. The Air Force special will be sent to more than 2,000 country stations in the United States and the American Forces Network by mid-November. Now in its 12th season, "Red, White and Air Force Blue Christmas" got its start 20 years ago as a holiday program called "The Gift."
For more military-related entertainment news, visit the (http://www.military.com/off-duty) Military.com Off-duty Center.


TRICARE and the New Health Care Law
The new health care law is the Affordable Care Act. Simply speaking, the Affordable Care Act will have very little impact on TRICARE beneficiaries. Beneficiaries who receive TRICARE benefits, whether at no cost, by electing to pay an enrollment fee, or by paying monthly premiums, have minimum essential coverage required under the Affordable Care Act. The biggest change they will notice may be an extra letter in their mailbox every January, and an extra box to check on their tax forms every April. Beginning with the 2014 tax season, and every tax year after that, the Department of Defense will send every TRICARE beneficiary the same information it sends the Internal Revenue Service. Because the information sent to the IRS is generated using beneficiaries' Social Security numbers, it is essential for sponsors to make sure their family's Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, or DEERS, information is correct and up-to-date.
For more updates on benefits programs and how they affect the military, visit the (http://militaryadvantage.military.com) Military Advantage blog.


Military Family Appreciation Month
November is Military Family Appreciation Month. To learn more about the history of this event and read some reflections on what it means to be a military family, visit Military.com's Military Appreciation Month page.


Holiday Mail Deadlines Announced
The Military Postal Service Agency (MPSA) recommends that parcel post packages for servicemembers overseas be mailed by Nov. 12 for delivery by the holidays. Officials at MPSA, an extension of the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), have published a (http://hqdainet.army.mil/mpsa/xmas.htm) chart that shows deadlines for various mailing options, broken down by the APO/FPO/DPO numbers of various destinations. USPS is offering a discount on its largest Priority Mail Flat Rate box at $14.85. The price includes a $2 per box discount for military mail being sent to APO/FPO/DPO destinations worldwide. Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes are available free at local post offices, or can be ordered from USPS online. Postage, labels and customs forms also are available online.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.
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