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The transition of military veterans from active service to civilian life: impact of transition on families and the role of the family, support, and recognition

June, 2019
Article:

This book chapter features in the book Military Veteran Reintegration: Approach, Management, and Assessment of Military Veterans Transitioning to Civilian Life. The book offers a toolkit for researchers and practitioners on best practices for easing the reintegration of military veterans returning to civilian society. It lays out how transition occurs, identifies factors that promote or impede transition, and operationalizes outcomes associated with transition success. Bringing together experts from around the world to address the most important aspects of military transition, the book looks at what has been shown to work and what has not, while also offering a roadmap for best-results moving forward.

Abstract

In this chapter, we briefly review the literature that exists in the area of transition for families in a military context and also consider the definitions of military families, using the United Kingdom and Estonia for comparative purposes, as well as drawing examples from across NATO. The authors introduce a Military Family Systems Model that explores the varying dynamics of the military family within different societies and consider which corresponding changes in policy and practice militaries/governments may need to consider or make. The authors then use a variation of their Model of Transition in Veterans, an applied approach based on Bourdieusian theory, to explore military-to-civilian transition from a familial perspective. This chapter will draw on the responses elicited from the NATO transition survey. The focus will be on the specific area of transition from the military to civilian life and will aim to review the current pan-NATO policies for practice in this area. The authors conclude with a number of succinct recommendations focusing on how families should be integrated into transition policy.

Full Reference

Fossey, M., Cooper, L. and Raid, K. (2019) The transition of military veterans from active service to civilian life: impact of transition on families and the role of the family, support, and recognition in Castro and Dursun (Eds) Military Veteran Reintegration: Approach, Management, and Assessment of Military Veterans Transitioning to Civilian Life London: Academic Press.

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