Army Family Covenant reaffirmed at West Point
November 10, 2010
WEST POINT, N.Y. (Nov. 10) -- Just before the curtain came up on the Army Soldier Show Nov. 2 at Eisenhower Hall Theatre, the top-tier leadership of West Point reaffirmed a commitment made three years ago to the Soldiers and Families at the installation.
"Before we start the show, we want to do something very, very important, and this is the best time to do it," Lt. Gen. David H. Huntoon, Jr., West Point Superintendent, said. "Three years ago ... West Point along with other posts, camps and stations around the world committed their leadership to Army Families in a very formal way."
Along with Huntoon, Col. Michael Tarsa, West Point garrison commander; U.S. Military Academy Command Sgt. Major Anthony Mahoney; and garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Jose Powell signed the Army Family Covenant on stage. Families representing all the individuals from the West Point community whom the Covenant pledges to support stood on stage as special guests to witness the signing.
On Oct. 8, 2007, the U.S. Army unveiled the first Army Family Covenant and made the commitment to provide Soldiers and their Families with a quality of life equal to their dedicated service and sacrifice to the nation. Huntoon read remarks from three years ago that then-U.S. Secretary of the Army Pete Geren made about the Covenant's purpose.
"The readiness of our all-volunteer force depends upon the health of the Families," Huntoon quoted. "I can assure you that your Army leadership understands the important contribution each and every one of you makes every day, and we need to make sure we step up and provide the support that Families need so that the Army Family stays healthy and ready."
The Covenant contains a number of commitments to improve Soldier and Family readiness and is the Army's promise to take care of its own while providing unconditional support to keep the entire Army strong.
The Family readiness commitments in the document include the standardizing and funding of existing Family programs and services, increasing accessibility and quality of health care, improving Soldier and Family housing, ensuring education and employment opportunities for Family members and ensuring excellence in schools, youth services and child care.
"Ladies and gentlemen, Families of West Point, that is our commitment to every Army Family on this magnificent installation," Huntoon said. "Thank you for your support each and every day, for the United States Military Academy and the United States Army."