The need to relocate to a different installation every several years is one of the most stressful aspects of military life, a requirement that hinders the ability of spouses to maintain careers and frequently interferes with children’s progression in school. A new RAND Corp. study found that the multitude of programs, policies and services DOD has implemented to help military families cope with the disruptions caused by permanent change of station (PCS) moves is comprehensive, and it did find evidence of a need for new programs.
On the other hand, the researchers were unable to demonstrate that those efforts work. “We don’t have good evidence of the efficacy of the current policy and services,” RAND researcher Patricia Tong told Military.com. “In terms of whether we found that there were gaps in existing policy and services to cover this broad list of disruptions — we didn’t find any,” Tong said.
The results, however, indicated there is room to improve the PCS move process to further alleviate family disruptions, particularly by increasing the lead time before a move is scheduled so that service members and their families have more time to plan their relocation.
Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. William Farrow