Final regulations for the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), a recent amendment to the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), were released by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), today. The NDAA, discussed in detail in previous posts, provides a new type of family and medical leave to employees whose family members are servicemembers and who are either called to active duty or who are injured while in active duty. The NDAA has been in effect since being signed by President Bush in January 2008. But, with the DOL’s publications of the final regulations, employers can expect to see more specific questions relating to leave under the NDAA.
There is a new online resource to help employees who may be navigating leave under the military-caregiver provision of the NDAA. The National Resource Directory, a collaborative effort between the departments of Defense, Labor and Veterans Affairs, is a Web-based network of care that includes resources for wounded, ill and injured service members, veterans, their families, families of the fallen and those who support them. (Last week, in honor of Veteran’s Day, we posted about similar initiative, America’s Heroes at Work, which provides employers with a variety of helpful information and tools to assist veterans in the reemployment process.)
The scope of the Directory is comprehensive and includes information on topics such as available benefits, eligibility requirements, help filing claims and appeals processes. Information on education and employment is also available, such as financial aid and scholarship information, apprentice and internship programs, and job training and placement. Additionally, family support programs, child-care services, counseling and support group information is all available in the Family and Caregiver Support section.
Information on housing, transportation, financial and legal support, assistive technology, medical care, psychological and behavioral conditions is also provided. Finally, resources can be listed by geography–on either a state or local level. This is an excellent resource filled with a tremendous amount of information that your employees caring for injured or ill servicemembers could potentially find very useful. Employers, you may consider sending a notice to employees about the availability of this and other government resources being made available to them at no cost.
The original press release, issued today, can be found here: Department of Defense Launches National Resource Directory For Wounded Warriors, Families And Caregivers