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Vandenberg officials conduct spouse town hall

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- More than a dozen spouses attended two town hall-style briefings March 26 -27 at the base theater here.

Vandenberg officials and military spouses came together with representatives from the Vandenberg Airman and Family Readiness Center, the 30th Force Support Squadron military personnel section and the 30th Mission Support Group this week to discuss the Air Force fiscal year 2014 force management programs and field questions.

"This briefing is meant to not only educate the military personnel but, also the spouses who are affected by the force management programs," said Chief Master Sgt. Rabindra Ramsook, 30th FSS superintendent. "This is an effort to educate you on the basics -- there are 16 programs. This briefing will be a good overview and then we'll take questions to address specific concerns."

The town hall included information on voluntary and involuntary separation programs for both enlisted and officer Airmen, transition assistance programs.

"We're going to give you guidance and eligibility for each of the force management programs," said Staff Sgt. Amanda Frederick, 30th FSS military personnel section noncommissioned officer in-charge. "Some enlisted and officer programs are the same, but there are different benefits depending on if you choose to apply for a voluntary program or take your chances with the board."

Though a lot of information was shared, spouses were encouraged to talk to their husbands or wives and make an informed decision.

"We are not able to talk specifics with you, but we can talk to you with your spouse present," Frederick said."

Spouses were also encouraged to actively participate in the transition assistance program.

"Yes, I highly recommend that you attend TAP with your spouse," said Linda Crowder, Vandenberg A&FRC community readiness consultant. "Another set of ears is always helpful. It's a lot of information and it's also a transition for spouses as well so the information would be very useful."

Vandenberg leaders were present and offered perspective for those worried about their spouses meeting a board.

"At last night's town hall, someone's spouse was worried about a physical training failure," Chief Master Sgt. Patrick Abbott, 30th MSG superintendent said. "The board is looking at 10 years' worth of data. They won't specifically look at a fitness test, but at how a fitness test failure was reflected on the data. Anyone who is concerned about their records has an opportunity to write a letter to the board. You're able to personalize that one issue and it might make the difference between being retained and not being retained."

Other members of Vandenberg leadership emphasized support is available to all Team V members during this uncertain time.

"Thank you for coming," said Lt. Col. Gregory Marty, 30th FSS commander. "Our focus is the impact to families and the support that the airman and family readiness center can provide. If you have any questions after today, please let us know. "

For more information or questions concerning force management programs call the 30 FSS career development at 606-4948.