JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. - –
Beginning in Fiscal Year 2014, the Air Force changed the Aerospace Expeditionary Forces (AEF) teaming construct window. This affects how often mission support personnel are vulnerable to deploy.
The AEF is divided into six windows, covering a 24-month period. JB Charleston support personnel are affected mainly in the P-2 and P-5 windows. Each period lasts for six months and Airmen assigned to a particular window must be able to deploy at any time during their assigned window. Enablers, the other main type of deployment tasking, fall under a different construct and are deployable at all times.
"The P-2 vulnerability window (the less taxing of the two) ended on September 30 and will start again next July. Until then, however, JB Charleston moves into its largest vulnerability period--the P-5 which lasts from now until April 1, 2016," said Mr. Robert Degregorio, 628th Logistics Readiness Squadron installation deployment officer.
Although the overall number of deployed personnel will remain relatively consistent at around 200, certain squadrons will be impacted more than others over the next several months. The Civil Engineer Squadron, the Logistics Readiness Squadron and the Force Support Squadron are the hardest hit with the current number of deployments.
"The impact of P5 on the Mission Support Group and our ability to support the Joint Base mission is minimal. All service and support organizations will continue to meet mission requirements. However, there may be some minor delays in service from those organizations that have members deploying from one or two person deep shops," said Col. Richard Mathews, 628th Mission Support Group commander.
"We only had one function, Logistics Plans (628 LRS), that was impacted enough to cause us to look for back fill personnel. That support was provided from the 315th Logistics Readiness Squadron. Regardless of the impact of P5 or any deployment cycle, we will ensure that the MSG continues to support and meet any and all mission
requirements within the 628th ABW as well as our mission partners," Mathews added.
There are numerous support programs to assist deployers and their families. These services, including the Key Spouse and Ombudsmen programs, are critical links to support families of deployed members. The Airman Family Readiness center and the Fleet and Family Support Center offer deployment support services that can be used by all military members and their families:
- Quarterly Deployed Spouse/Family Dinners
- Car Care Because We Care (1 Free oil change voucher >30 day deployment)
- Free Child Care through the FCC office (16 hrs. for pre-deployment/16 hrs. during deployment/16 hrs. post-deployment)
- Little Hero Ceremony (Run biannually at the A&FRC)
"Making sure the deploying spouse completes the 'Deployed Support Application' at the A&FRC with their spouse's information is important so they can know all the services we have available," said Technical Sgt. Kathryn Wood, NCOIC of the A&FRC.