Blue Star Welcome Week continues to gain support from leaders in communities across the country – leaders who see and recognize the challenges military and Veteran families face and encourage their constituents to support the mission. “The goal of Blue Star Welcome Week is to address the worst problems in our community – awareness of suicide and mental health among service members, Veterans, and their families – by creating the future we all want,” says Blue Star Families co-founder and CEO Kathy Roth-Douquet.
One important way leaders are showing their support for this mission is through issuing proclamations. A proclamation, typically issued and signed by state, local, federal, mayoral, or legislative officials, is an announcement that publicly highlights an initiative or observance. For Blue Star Families, they serve as a statement of support and commitment to recognize military and Veteran families.
What started as an ambitious initiative has blossomed into an overwhelming outpouring from the DOD and government communities. Blue Star Families has received video messages, signed declarations, and more in recognition of military and Veteran families this year. While this list continues to grow, it currently includes:
- Chesapeake, VA Mayor Richard W. West
- Chicago, IL Mayor Lori Lightfoot
- Cincinnati, OH Mayor Chief of Staff, Keizayla Fambro
- Clarksville, TN Mayor Joe Pitts
- Jacksonville, FL Mayor Lenny Curry
- Norfolk, VA Mayor Kenny Alexander
- Portsmouth, VA Mayor Shannon Glover
- Staten Island, NY Borough President Vito Fossella
- Virginia Beach, VA Mayor Bobby Dyer
- Alabama Governor Kay Ivey
- Arizona Governor Doug Ducey
- Illinois Governor JB Pritzker
- Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds
- Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt
- Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf
- South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem
- Tennessee Governor Bill Lee
Recognizing Military Communities
Why are so many providing official, public support of military and Veteran families? Because it matters. Blue Star Welcome Week was developed to help families feel a sense of belonging in their communities. From the findings in the recent years of the Military Family Lifestyle Survey, a reoccurring theme suggests military and Veteran families continue to feel disconnected from the places in which they live. More importantly, they don’t believe that civilian communities understand their experiences. “By strengthening the community that supports the family, you are providing even more strength to the military and individual service members,” Kathy explains.
When officials such as those listed above declare their support, military families are essentially hearing, “We see you, we hear you, and we want to stand in your corner.” As Blue Star Welcome Week grows, so will this list. If you would like to see your elected official represented, contact Blue Star Families for more information. Together, we can expand the network of support for military and Veteran communities.
Watch this video to see and hear the messages and proclamations we’ve received for Blue Star Welcome Week.