In the military, one of the most stressful parts of relocating to a new assignment, second only to finding a home, is securing child care. The post-COVID economy has driven cost and competition for child care to all-time highs, leaving service members to figure out the challenging question of how to pay for something they have to cover.
That's gotten harder as the price of everything from bread to gas has gone up at breakneck speed, far outpacing military pay increases. Child care costs have risen dramatically during the pandemic by41%, now accounting for 20% of the average American's salary.
Fully funded child care would be another positive step on the long and continuous journey of improved military compensation.
The Department of Defense should push for legislation and funding to cover the cost of non-school age child care for all active-duty junior enlisted troops and company-grade officers in the paygrades of E-1 through E-5 and O-1 through O-3 who have eligible dependents. This entitlement would help bolster mission readiness, strengthen young military families' finances, and, in an increasingly difficult recruiting environment, better position the armed forces to compete for talent.
Read the full article from Military.com.
More from CNAS
Sharper: National Security Workforce
A capable workforce is central to the effectiveness of any government, military, or industry. Opaque processes and standards that lag behind the private sector contribute to r...
By Anna Pederson, Taren Sylvester & Charles Horn
Here's one prescription for getting more qualified civilians into national security work
As threats to the United States multiply, the government will need growing numbers of capable civilians in national security. But creaky apparatus for hiring and clearing peop...
By Katherine L. Kuzminski
Why is public service a members-only club?
If federal agencies want to cast a wide net to catch unique skills and perspectives, they must employ a more effective strategy to communicate to prospective students how to n...
By Celina Pouchet
Why Is Public Service a Members-Only Club?
In 2018, I attended an event at my public university where a large percentage of the student body had transferred from a local community college. The event was one of a few or...
By Celina Pouchet