WASHINGTON D.C. — Although the Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) represents over 130,000 military-connected family members there has not been a unified voice that addresses the educational and medical concerns of family members until now. In March 2021, Partners in PROMISE, Exceptional Families of the Military, Military Kids – Special Education Alliance, Military Special Needs Network, and the Modern Military Association of America met to form the EFMP Coalition.

EFMP Coalition unites existing EFMP-focused nonprofits who are helping to advance the cause of military families enrolled in the program due to medical and/or education concerns.

“Despite the tremendous progress made in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts, the disability community is often not included in the conversation,” said Michelle Norman, Founder and Executive Director of Partners in PROMISE.

EFMP families need a unified voice more than ever, as the negative impacts of COVID-19 have disproportionately affected EFMP family members. “We need to work together to ensure our families have access to reliable and medical care and educational services,” said Jennifer Barnhill, Chief Operating Officer for Partners in PROMISE. “COVID-19 has flipped normality on its head, even for military families, but the denial of services should not be part of our ‘new normal.’” The Coalition is closely monitoring all issues that impact EFMP families with special attention being paid to areas of concern.


Our mission priorities are focused on serving LGBTQ service members, veterans, and families, including those in the Exceptional Family Member Program,” said Jennifer Dane, Executive Director, Modern Military Association of America. “We proudly join this Coalition and are confident that our collective action will bring about positive changes for EFMP families.”

Service members should not have to fight a battle at the home front. The Coalition is here to help families advocate for their right to basic healthcare and education. “In February 2020, the House Armed Service Committee promised our families that there would be a systematic change in EFMP,” said Austin Carrigg, Founder, and Chief Executive Officer, Exceptional Families of the Military. “We are hopeful that the newly formed Coalition will give EFMP connected families a ‘seat at the table’ as lawmakers and military officials work on Tricare and EFMP reform.”

The Coalition is hopeful that this increased attention to the Exceptional Family Member Program and inclusion effort that has been taken by the DoD and political leadership will result in significant benefits for family members and are excited to have the support of so many other organizations within the military family community.

To request an interview with a member of the EFMP Coalition or for additional information please email info@thepromiseact.org.

More on the five organizations that make up the EFMP coalition can be found through the following sources.

Partners in PROMISE

Partners in PROMISE was founded in January 2020 by four mothers to Protect the Rights Of Military children In Special Education(PROMISE). Focusing on a strategy of educating and advocacy, Partners in PROMISE is the link between special needs families, established military service organizations, the Department of Defense, and legislators, working towards collaborative solutions to complex problems.

Website: https://thepromiseact.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PartnersinPROMISE

Twitter: @PartnersinPROM1 – https://twitter.com/PartnersinPROM1

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/partners-in-promise

Exceptional Families of the Military

Exceptional Families of the Military’s mission is to connect military families with Disabilities, Special Healthcare Needs, or additional educational needs from all branches of the service in order to navigate within the Exceptional Family Member Programs and identify areas of improvement that affect the families we represent. Using the data we collect while simultaneously assisting our families, we endeavor to create long-lasting systematic changes in the laws and regulations that affect EFMP families. We look forward to the continued collaboration of the newly formed EFMP coalition to further improve the lives of all EFMP families.

Website: www.ExceptionalMilitaryFam.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ExceptionalFamiliesMilitary

Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/company/exceptional-families-of-the-military

Instagram @EFMVoice: https://www.instagram.com/efmvoice/

Twitter: @EFMVoice: https://twitter.com/efmvoice

Military Kids – Special Education Alliance

Military Kids-Special Education Alliance founded by a Military Kid with the mission of ensuring military-connected students with special needs have equal access to public education. Supporting military-connected students through education, advocacy, and homefront accountability.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/militarykidsspecialeducation

Military Special Needs Network

Military Special Needs Network was founded in 2010 as a grassroots organization for families who have a dependent with an identified medical, educational, or behavioral need. Our mission includes providing peer-to-peer support, education, and information for active-duty families enrolled in the Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) as well as assisting Reserve, Guard, and Retired families. Military Special Needs Network offers many online groups and programs and serves as an inclusive voice for the diverse needs of our military families.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MilitarySpecialNeedsNetwork

EFMP Support Group: https://www.facebook.com/EFMPsupport

EFMP for Adults Group: https://www.facebook.com/EFMP4adults

EFMP to Retirement Group: https://www.facebook.com/EFMPtoRetirement

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/militaryspecialneedsnetwork/

Instagram: @MilitarySpecialNeedsNetwork

Twitter: @milspecialneeds: https://twitter.com/milspecialneeds

Modern Military Association of America

The Modern Military Association of America (MMAA) is the nation’s largest and oldest non-profit organization for LGBTQ servicemembers, military spouses/partners, veterans, caregivers, and allies. Find out more at www.ModernMilitary.org

Facebook:@modernmilitary – https://www.facebook.com/modernmilitary

Instagram: @lgbtq_military – https://www.instagram.com/lgbtq_military

Twitter: @LGBTQ_Military – https://twitter.com/LGBTQ_Military

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/modernmilitary