Supporting military families was a priority of the Iowa Legislature in 2010.  After the Governor signed the final pieces of legislation in April, Iowa became the first state in the nation to complete the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DoD) top quality of life issues for military families regarding education, health care, employment, custody issues, and voting.

Below is the top ten list identified by DoD, which Iowa has accomplished:

  • Common key benefits that support Guard and Reserve members and their families
  • Ensure deployment separation does not determine child custody or visitation decisions
  • Increase access to quality, affordable childcare for military families
  • Minimize school disruption for military children during transition and deployment
  • Enhance opportunities for portable careers for military spouses
  • Expand unemployment compensation for trailing military spouses
  • Promote enforcement of the DoD predatory lending regulation
  • Improve absentee voting for military members and their families
  • Conform state laws with DoD rules on disposition
  • Satisfy foreign language requirements

Over the past few years, the Iowa Legislature has worked hard at supporting Iowa’s veterans and service members and their families.

In anticipation of the largest deployment in the 170-year history of the Iowa National Guard, with over 3,000 members being deployed, Iowa is now better prepared to support military families here at home.

For more information, see DoD’s official web site for families, USA4Military Families: www.usa4militaryfamilies.dod.mil/.