Policy & Legislation
Military-Connected Children need someone to give them a seat at the table. That’s us. The Military Children's Six Foundation advocates for policies that prioritize the needs of military-connected children so they can thrive.
Who We Are
Our advocates & policymakers have a responsibility to prioritize Military-Connected Children.
We are a non-partisan, research-based center working at all levels of government and across multiple issue areas that affect babies and their families.
National policies affect every aspect of families' lives and can promote equity across states to ensure all military-connected children have the best opportunity to thrive.
What We Do
Congress and the Administration could do more to improve our threadbare systems for supporting the health and well-being of military-connected children and families. The Military Children's Six Foundation federal policy team works to influence decisions made at the national level and offers resources that identify policy opportunities to bolster the support available to this country’s military children and their families, and to lay a strong foundation for their future.
State and Local Policy
Policy decisions made at the state and local levels directly impact the lives of military-connected children and their families.
The Military Children's Six Foundation Policy Center works directly with leaders and advocates across the country to advance policies that help military/veteran families with children thrive. Our resources highlight innovative state and community approaches and strategies to improve and better coordinate services for military-connected children and their families.
The Military Children's Six Foundation "Back 2 Back - Advocacy Works" to make the potential of every military-connected child a national priority.
"Every child deserves a strong start in life, but policies have not kept up to meet the needs of today’s military-connected children, parents, and caregivers."
"Back 2 Back - Advocacy Works" is a call to action for policymakers to prioritize the needs of military-connected children and their families and invest in our nation’s future.
The Work and How We Mobilize
Advocating and building systems to support the Military-Connect Child.
The Military Children's Six Foundation has the experience of fighting for policy changes that improve the lives of Military-Connected Children and their families. No other organization has a track record of advocate attorneys influencing decision-makers to consider how their choices affect our Military-Connected Children.
We build resources that illustrate how military-connected children and their families are faring across the country.
We recruit powerful parent advocates, coalitions, and veteran organizations and work with state partners to ensure their voices are heard by policymakers at every level of government. We join forces where needed.
We support policy and advocacy leaders in states building better systems and working toward policy wins for military-connected children.
We advocate for policies that affect military-connected children, and their families.
We join forces because if it affects the military/veteran parent or guardians then it affects the Military-Connected Child and the Military Children's Six Foundation has their Six.
1 /S. 1233, or its Companion Bill - H.R. 3651
Love Lives on Act of 2023
Objective: Change the current law that unfairly binds young surviving spouses to widowhood. Under the current law, if surviving spouses remarry before the age of 55, they forfeit lifesaving benefits afforded to them by the Department of Defense as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Background: congressional research and surviving spouse experience show age 55 unfairly penalizes younger surviving spouses. There is no specific rationale for requiring younger surviving spouses to remain unmarried. Less than 7.9% of total DIC recipients are under the age of 55, therefore it has minimal budget implications and corrects discrimination based solely on age. Some of that small number may not even remarry. Please help us remove the remarriage limitation completely, especially the age limit on all benefits including Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), home loans, educational benefits, Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP), burial benefits, and TRICARE.
Surviving spouses under the age of 55 have endured pain and suffering most Americans will not. Younger surviving spouses cannot remarry without penalty, but those over the age can.
The government's responsibility to surviving spouses' sacrifice does not end just because the survivor remarries.
In 2020, H.R. 105 was signed reducing the age from 57 to 55 years, setting the precedent for elimination for all ages.
We anticipate the cost to be low as the government is currently paying these benefits over the lifetime of the surviving spouse. Furthermore, the overall number of younger surviving spouses is low.
Surviving spouses under the age of 55 only accounts for 6.4% of the total DIC recipients.
A new marriage does not remove any suffering, hardship, or vulnerability.
DIC is compensation for the loss. The loss of a service member does not go away with a remarriage.
It strips family identity and a choice between finances and family which further burdens the surviving spouse.
Most first responders in the United States are allowed to legally remarry and maintain pensions and benefits.
SBP is insurance paid for by military members and should not be subject to elimination due to remarriage. Other insurance policies in the US get paid regardless.
If it affects the parent it affects the military child. The Military Children's Six Foundation stands with "The Gold Star Wives of America."
2 / H.R. 1083, OR ITS COMPANION BILL, S. 414, CARING FOR SURVIVORS ACT OF 2023
Objective: God Star Wives of America, Inc., is advocating for the Caring for Survivors Act of 2023 that would increase Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) for survivors to 55% of a single 100% disabled veteran's compensation, making it equal with other federal survivor programs.
Background: Dependency and Indemnity Compensation is a tax-free monetary benefit administered by the US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). DIC is paid to survivors of service members who die in the line of duty while on active duty, veterans who die as a result of a service-connected disability, or veterans who are rated 100% disabled by the VA for 10 years or more. This benefit primarily goes to surviving spouses, though surviving children and parents may be eligible as well.
DIC is compensation with the purpose of replacing a portion of the family income lost as a result of the service member/veteran's death due to their military service.
Survivor benefits have been paid in some form since the Revolutionary War.
There are two types of DIC for survivors:
Flat Rate DIC: A DIC recipient whose service member/veteran's death was on or after January 1, 1993, currently receives a flat rate of $1,562.74 per month.
Rank-Based DIC: A DIC recipient whose service member/veteran's death was before January 1, 1993, receives DIC based on the rank (pay grade) of the service member. A DIC recipient whose service member/veteran's rank was E1-E6 currently receives $1,562.74. A DIC recipient whose veteran's rank was E7 or above receives a higher amount based on rank.
DIC has only been increased by Cost-of-Living Adjustments since 1993.
The latest statistics from the Veterans Benefits Administration Annual Benefits Report for Fiscal Year 2022, updated as February 2023, indicate that 459, 566 surviving spouses receive DIC.
Currently, a 100% disabled veteran receives monthly compensation from VA in the amount $3,621.95 (Per 2001 Public Law 107-107, a deceased service member is the equivalent of a 100% disabled veteran.) When the service member or veteran dies, the compensation from VA drops significantly, to just 43% of the veteran's compensation.
When an employee for the Federal Government dies due to their job, their surviving spouses are able to receive up to 55% of their spouse's salary as their death benefit.