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SPECIAL MOTHER'S DAY REPORT: Helping Military Moms Balance Family and Longer Deployments

May 13 2007

 SPECIAL MOTHER'S DAY REPORT: Helping Military Moms Balance Family and Longer Deployments

This Mother’s Day marks the fourth year of the U.S. military’s presence in Iraq and the sixth year of the U.S. military's presence in Afghanistan. Women make up a significant percentage of the current active duty force, representing one in seven U.S. military personnel in Iraq.1 Mothers in the military, those in the active duty force and the spouses of male service members, make up a substantial portion of women in the military.

Like mothers in the civilian world, mothers in the military face challenges in balancing work with family, such as meeting monthly expenses, finding and accessing high quality child care, and accessing quality health care services for their families and themselves. Yet, military moms often face the added burden of lengthy and more frequent deployments and separation from their children and spouses. While the military has taken steps to address the needs of mothers within its ranks, the added strain on the military caused by the long mission in Iraq putting even more stress on military mothers.

Key challenges facing military mothers include the following:

Child care services are not meeting current needs, or increased demands due to deployment;

Short family leave periods after child birth and adoption impact the retention of mothers in the military; and

Limited resources dedicated to mental health services to help military mothers and their children

For the full text of this report, please click on the file listed under "Related Resources."

 

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