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Company Command: The Bottom Line - Army Leadership Guide

Can my Chain of Command Force me to Obtain a Family Care Plan?

Top. My situation is a bit unique. My wife recently had reconstructive ankle surgery and is unable to drive for 8-12 weeks. This has caused me to have to drive my child to and from school. Lately my leadership has begun implementing 1700 meetings which cause me to be late to my 1800 deadline of picking my child up. This has caused me to accrue multiple late fees and I’m concerned this may lead to legal action on the schools part. Either way I brought this to my leadership and received the “well you’re the only one affected” and there have been talks about me needing a family care plan. I don’t feel a family care plan is necessary, can they force a family care plan upon me? Also is it legal and ethical for the command to continue tho accrue late fees that are starting to add up? Can I bring this to the attention of IG? Thanks for the help!

The Evaluator - Army Evaluation & Counseling Guide

Bottom-line

YES!

Discussion

BLUF: IAW AR 600-20 you can be required to implement a family care plan.
IAW with AR 600-20 a family care plan should be implemented. See references below., Basically if the If the family situation is interfering with the Soldiers ability to meet mission requirements the family care plan should be implemented.

Now usually the chain of command will work with a Soldier going through this type of situation. You might want to consider speaking with the commander/1SG on open door policy and explaining the situation. Let them know when the situation will be resolved. Explain the secondary consequences (late fees) and how they are impacting you and potentially your ability to continue to serve. Most importantly bring two or three solutions to them. Then ask them to put themselves in your shoes.

Usually the chain of command is caring especially when the understand the issue. They will usually make an exception or find another solution for a given period of time.

References:

AR 600-20

5–5(1)…. Plans must be made to ensure Family members are properly and adequately cared for when the Soldier is deployed, on TDY, or otherwise not available due to military requirements.

5-5 b(4) Commanders of AA and RC Soldiers, regardless of the Soldier’s grade, will conduct or arrange for Family care plan counseling and require a Family care plan be completed when any of the following apply: …A Soldier whose spouse is incapable of self-care or is otherwise physically, mentally, or emotionally disabled so as to require special care or assistance

5-5 c. Soldiers must arrange for the care of their Family members in order to be— (1) Available for duty when and where the needs of the Army dictate. (2) Able to perform assigned military duties without interference of Family responsibilities.
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Mark is a Retired Command Sergeant Major with 26 years of military leadership experience. He held 3 military occupational specialties (Field Artillery, Nuclear Weapons Tech, and Ammunition Ordnance). Mark is one of the leading military authors in the fields of leadership, counseling, and training.

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