Kaiserslautern-Saarland Region Chapter Communications Coordinator; DA Global Veterans and Military Families Caucus Steering Committee; Co-Chair, DA Germany Veterans and Military Families Caucus

  • Military children qualify for a variety of VA benefits

    Every April, the nation celebrates the Month of the Military Child – a time that honors all military children for their dedication and sacrifices. The VA honors military children year-round by providing them earned benefits. Dependents and surviving children of Veterans and service members may qualify for certain benefits, such as life insurance, education services and health care.
    Click the link for more information: https://blogs.va.gov/VAntage/86374/military-children-qualify-variety-va-benefits/

  • published April is Month of The Military Child in News 2021-04-05 17:48:08 -0400

  • A Proclamation on Month of the Military Child, 2021

    April marks the Month of the Military Child, when our Nation pays tribute to the resilience and tenacity of our military children; over 2 million active duty, National Guard, Reserve and children of veterans who did not make the choice to serve, but live each day supporting their brave parents.  These young people live out the words of the poet John Milton, “they also serve who only stand and wait.”  We see their service and thank them for it.

    From a young age, children of service members sometimes endure long separations from their parents and shoulder the burdens of service.  They spend holidays and milestones apart from those they love the most, or celebrate with only a short phone call or virtual chat from a faraway parent.  This is something the First Lady and I have witnessed in our own lives, as our grandchildren experienced their father’s deployment to Iraq.

    Military children change schools up to nine times between the start of kindergarten and high school graduation.  With each move, they grapple with difficult goodbyes and the challenge of making new friends.  Although life in a military family can include exploring new places and exposure to other cultures and customs, it can also bring frustration and loneliness.  During the Month of the Military Child, we show our appreciation for the commitment and service of military children in shouldering these challenges, and we recognize the stressors on military children brought about by the unique demands of their parents’ military life.

    The strength of our Armed Forces comes not just from those who wear the uniform, but from their families, who also serve on behalf of our country.  As a Nation, we have many obligations, but we have only one truly sacred obligation:  to properly prepare and equip our troops when we send them into harm’s way, and to care for them and their families.  The First Lady and I understand the gravity of this promise personally, and we have made supporting service members, veterans, their families, caregivers, and survivors a top priority for my Administration.

    That is why the First Lady has committed to relaunching the Joining Forces initiative, mobilizing all Americans to continue the national commitment to support and engage our military families.  By raising awareness about the unique aspects of military life and working toward solutions to its challenges, my Administration will continue to support military children and will help ensure that they have opportunities to grow and live out their dreams.

    Observing the Month of the Military Child demonstrates our support for military children who make daily sacrifices so their parents can keep our Nation safe.  Military-connected children are strong and resilient, and we must match their strength with a commitment to provide the full support of our communities and our Government.  I encourage all Americans to serve them as well as they serve us.

    NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as the Month of the Military Child.  I call upon the people of the United States to honor military children with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

    IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.


  • published U.S. Dept. of Defense Resources in News 2021-04-05 17:26:59 -0400

    U.S. Dept. of Defense Resources

    Resources available to 

  • DOD Announces Policy Updates for Transgender Military Service

    IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 31, 2021

    Today, the Department of Defense published the policy updates for transgender military service. The policy updates restore the Department’s original 2016 policies regarding transgender service.

    The revised policies prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or an individual’s identification as transgender, provide a means by which to access into the military in one’s self-identified gender provided all appropriate standards are met, provide a path for those in service for medical treatment, gender transition, and recognition in one’s self-identified gender, and seeks to protect the privacy of all Service members and to treat all Service members with dignity and respect.

    The policies will be effective on April 30, 2021, affording the Military Services the necessary time to update service-level policies and provide guidance to Commanders, Service members, medical professionals, and other communities of practice as appropriate. During this period, the Department’s interim guidance of January 29, 2021 remains in effect.

    The DoD Instruction 6130.03: Medical Standards for Appointment, Enlistment, or Induction into the Military Services can be found here.

    The DoD Instruction 1300.28: In-Service Transition for Transgender Service Members can be found here.

  • published April is the Month of the Military Child in News 2021-04-01 01:41:39 -0400

    April is the Month of the Military Child

    Month of the Military Child
    An opportunity to recognize military children and youth for their heroism, character, courage, sacrifices and continued resilience.
    April 5, 2021 - Gold Star Wives Day
    A day set aside to recognize the sacrifices of Gold Star wives.
    April 14, 2021 - Air Force Reserve Birthday
    April 23, 2021 - Army Reserve Birthday
    April 30, 2021 - National Military Brats Day
    A day set aside to honor the children of military personnel. Learn more...


  • March 29-Nation to Observe Vietnam War Veterans Day

    On March 29, Americans will come together to commemorate the service and sacrifices made by the nearly 3 million service members who served in Vietnam.

    In 2012, President Barack Obama signed a presidential proclamation, designating March 29 as the annual observance of Vietnam War Veterans Day.

    The signing of the proclamation marked the 50th anniversary of the departure of the last American troops from Vietnam — March 29, 1973. Only  U.S. embassy personnel and support staff remained in South Vietnam until the fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975.



  • published DoD, Nation Celebrate Women’s History Month in News 2021-03-23 03:23:52 -0400

    DoD, Nation Celebrate Women’s History Month

    March is Women's History Month, a commemoration set aside to honor women's contributions in American history, including in the U.S. military.

    On March 16, 1987, President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation dedicating March as Women's History Month. "From earliest times, women have helped shape our nation," the proclamation reads. https://www.defense.gov/Explore/Features/Story/Article/2545824/dod-nation-celebrate-womens-history-month/source/GovDelivery/

  • Statement on the Atlanta Shootings by Democrats Abroad

    On Tuesday, March 16th, 2021, a gunman killed at least eight individuals and injured others in Atlanta in yet another unspeakable tragedy. Most of the individuals lost are from the Asian American community. 

    Sadly, this is yet another example of the current threat facing our community. The rise in anti-Asian American violence and hateful rhetoric contributing to that violence in the United States cannot be ignored. Between March 2020 and February 2021, there have been 3,795 hate incidents reported by Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in all 50 states and D.C., according to Stop AAPI Hate

    It is clear the derogatory anti-Asian language used throughout the past year continues to have a real-world impact. While President Biden’s condemnation of the violence against Asian Americans in his prime-time address last week is a good start, more political leaders need to speak out against this type of rhetoric and do more to support Asian American communities. More of us need to step up and speak out in our communities to make it clear that hate has no place here. Racist comments should not be brushed aside or ignored, they must be confronted and condemned. If it was not clear before, it is clear now that AAPI communities around the United States are targets of hate. 

    While this will not solve the racism problem in our country, we must continue to work together to pass common sense gun control legislation. Gun homicide (mass shootings, so-called “everyday” violence, and police-involved shootings) are a universal American threat that only make other social challenges worse.

    Call your Senators to tell them to support handgun laws, including S591 and S763, which expand background checks. 

    Democrats Abroad condemns these acts of violence. We stand in solidarity with the AAPI community and our AAPI Democrats Abroad members. We must work together to speak out and stand up against this type of hate. These hate crimes must be taken seriously and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Hate against any of us affects us all.

    We extend our deepest sympathies to those who have lost loved ones to last night’s shootings. We stand with you, we hear you, and we will fight with you to combat this wave of hatred and violence.


    In Solidarity,

    Julia Bryan, Democrats Abroad Chair

    Cory Lemke and Emily Lines, Democrats Abroad Asian American & Pacific Islander Caucus Co-Chairs 


  • published THE EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT (ERA) in News 2021-03-20 03:44:28 -0400


    “Equality of rights under the law shall not be abridged by the United States or any state on account of sex."                

    On March 17, the House of Representatives passed a joint resolution to remove the time limit placed on the Equal Rights Amendment (HJ Res 17) to the Constitution. Now this will move to the Senate. The House also voted to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a landmark bill that covers everyone.

    From Shari Temple, the DA ERA Task Force Chair:                                                                                                                  

    The ERA Task Force needs your help NOW.  

    Please contact your state’s senators.                                                         

    Post  your story by March 24. Login to Democrats Abroad before you post your story.                                              

    Your stories on why ERA is important to you will be included in hand delivered packets to all Congress members. They could help influence some Senators to vote for SJRes 1. Equal rights must be anchored in our Constitution so they cannot be undone with an executive order. Tell Congress your story – www.democratsabroad.org/era_stories.      

    Please join us in telling Congress why the ERA is important to you.  The DA ERA Task Force will share your story with House and Senate members. Simply go to https://www.democratsabroad.org/era_stories. We want to see a story for your Senators. You can write as few as a couple of sentences or a full dissertation (but in 500 word increments). And you can even include a photo, ideally with a pro-ERA sign. Together, we CAN make a difference.

    Thanks for your help in promoting the Equal Rights Amendment and equality for everyone in US.


  • published March is the Month of the Military Caregiver in News 2021-02-28 03:20:29 -0500

    March is the Month of the Military Caregiver

    Month of the Military Caregiver
    During the Month of the Military Caregiver, Americans recognize and honor military caregivers’ sacrifices and successes. Learn more...
    March 3, 2021 - Navy Reserve Birthday
    March 5, 2021 - Seabee Birthday
    March 13, 2021 - K 9 Veterans Day
    A national effort to make March 13 K9 Veterans Day. March 13, 1942 is the official birthday of the United States K9 Corps, and so it seems only right to annually honor their service on that date. They served to save, and they deserve to be remembered. Learn more...
    March 29, 2021 - Vietnam Veterans Day
    A day set aside to show honor and respect to our Vietnam Veterans. Learn more...


  • published Time To Request Your Absentee Ballots! in News 2021-02-28 02:59:47 -0500

    Time To Request Your Absentee Ballots!

    Register to vote and request your absentee ballot at www.votefromabroad.org

    Request that your absentee ballot be emailed to you.

    Americans overseas must request their absentee ballots every calendar year. Best to do this now so you are ready for all 2021 elections! Some people missed out on voting in the November election because they had not requested their absentee ballots before the deadline! Register/Request your absentee ballot today! Make sure you are all set to vote in 2021. 

    Register To Vote Now--Make Sure You Get Your Ballot

    Just go to www.votefromabroad.org and follow the prompts to fill out the form. We recommend you check the box to have your blank ballot sent to you by “Email/Online” or “Fax.”  

    After you’ve filled out the form, Email, Fax, or Mail your signed form to your Local Election Office.

  • published Black History Month Veterans in News 2021-02-22 12:23:15 -0500

    Black History Month Veterans

    During Black History Month, the DA Global Veterans and Military Families Caucus is highlighting the contributions of veterans. 

    Featured Black  History Month Veterans:

    Doris “ Dorrie” Miller, Midshipman Sydney Barber, Department of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, James Earl Jones, Montel Williams, Sunny Anderson, Representative Charlie Rangel, Harry Belafonte, Morgan Freeman, Berry Gordy, Jr., Jimi Hendrix, MC Hammer, Mr. T, James Avery, Tucker Smallwood, Skye P. Marshall, Alex Haley, Colonel Guion S.  Bluford, Jr., Lieutenant General Julius W. Becton Jr., Private First Class Milton L. Olive III-Medal of Honor, Admiral Michelle Howard, Rear Admiral Retired Lillian Fishburne, Rear Admiral Annie Andrews, Major General Irene Trowell-Harris, Minuteman Lemuel Haynes, Corporal Freddie Stowers, First Lieutenant Vernon J. Baker, Harriet Tubman, Private Nelson Charles Davis, Secretary of State Colin Powell, Hazel Johnson-Brown, Cathay Williams , Jackie Robinson, Medgar Evers, Vernice Armour

    For details on their accomplishments, check Democrats Abroad Veterans and Military Families Caucus - Facebook (www.facebook.com/DAVetsAndMilitaryFamilies)

    Join the DA Veterans and Military Families Global Caucus:  [email protected]

    Absentee Ballots.

    Register/Request your absentee ballot today! Make sure you are all set to vote in 2021.                                            

    Register to vote and request your absentee ballot at www.votefromabroad.org.                                                        

    Request that your absentee ballot be emailed to you.

    Americans overseas must request their absentee ballots every calendar year. Some Americans missed out on voting in the November election because they had not requested their absentee ballots before the deadline! 


    Read more

  • Georgia January runoff elections for two Senate seats that will decide control of the Senate.

    Calling all Georgia voters!! 

    • Didn’t register this year? Take action now. Registration deadline is Dec 7.  www.votefromabroad.org
      • Even if you didn’t vote this year. Even if you turn 18 Jan 5. Even if your last GA residence is now a commercial zone. Email your registration in asap, don’t wait.

    More clarifications

    • Voters who requested their ballot this year don't have to re-request it unless they want to change how they receive their ballot (for example, to change to receive the ballot by email).
    • GA voters can use an FWAB now. Details on how to vote it correctly for two US senate races are on the way.  
    • Voters can use express courier to send their ballots back by Jan 5.
    • The USPS is expected to be massively overloaded in Dec due to the holidays, limited airline services, and fewer people hand delivering packages. We suggest voters use postal mail in Nov, express courier in December. 

  • Absentee Voting Week September 27-October 4, 2020

    Absentee Voting Week is September 27-October 4 

    It’s  easy with www.votefromabroad.org

    Spread the word to your friends, family, and colleagues that now is the time to take action to vote from overseas.  Post on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or other social media that you are voting from abroad when you drop off or mail your completed ballot. 

    Your Vote Counts
    Many U.S. elections within the past ten years have been decided by a margin of victory of less than 0.1%.  All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline (differs by state).  


  • signed up on Tiny Actions Signup 2020-09-21 12:38:23 -0400


    Democrats Abroad invites you to join us in a special voter rally, and tribute to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Sept 21, 4:30 pm to 8 pm Germany (10:30am to 2pm Eastern).  Learn about GOTV, outreach and ballot protection plans, what to look for in the final stretch of the campaign and opportunities to participate. We'll also host a special zoom room for voter questions. You can talk 1 to 1 with a voter assistance volunteer about your voter questions.Remember: Overseas voters who requested to receive their ballots by email (as we encourage all to do!) should receive yours by Sept 19 (though you can still request it after this date at votefromabroad.org). Join us with your questions.

  • A Conversation with Ambassador John Emerson and Kimberly Marteau Emerson

    Sunday, September 20, 2020 at 06:00 PM Berlin Time 

    Online (Login Info Sent Before Event) in Online, Germany

    On Sunday, September 20 at 6:00pm CEST, John Emerson, former U.S. Ambassador to Germany (2013-2017), and Kimberly Marteau Emerson will join Democrats Abroad to discuss the current election and what a Biden-Harris victory would mean for German-American relations.