Military men and women put their lives on the line for us every day. They not only sacrifice their literal lives, but they sacrifice the aspects of their lives that make life worth living: marriage and children. According to reports, some service members have lost out on their parental rights due to their honorable service in the military.

According to Army Times, the federal government wants to better protect military mothers and fathers who lose custody of their kids due to their absences while serving. Defense Secretary Robert Gates wants to enact legislation that would prohibit family law courts from making custody decisions based on parents' military service alone.

Thirty-eight states currently have related laws in action, but some think that firmer, more protective and widespread laws are needed in order to protect families. The goal of every family law decision involving children is to identify and create a situation that will best serve the kids' best interests. Despite some courts' rulings in favor of taking custody away from military parents, proponents of new legislation believe that decision is not always in the best interest of kids.

The details of the reported upcoming legislation are undisclosed, and such a proposal might be met with apprehension. Up to this point, the Pentagon has decided against the enactment of federal laws regarding child custody decisions because they believe that states could make such decisions more effectively.


Army Times: "Gates now supports law to protect child custody," Karen Jowers, 17 Feb. 2011