I already posted about why it can be difficult to be a Navy wife. Here’s a simple way to make it just a little bit easier.
I found out that I’d be stationed in California in March of 2011. I was stationed in Florda at the time and deployed in the Middle East. As soon as we found out about the move, my wife started working on her California professional license so she could start work as soon as possible after the move. She was already licensed to practice in Florida, and the test needed to certify in Florida was a national test – there are no additional educational or testing requirements to practice in California, just new paperwork to fill out. It took her 6 months before she was able to start work, and she was only able to get it done that quickly because she made two seperate in-person trips to Sacramento to go yell at beuracrats to do their job correctly (each trip was about 6 hours both ways).
This process included several rounds of school transcripts being mailed and subsequently lost by the State, as well as several FBI and DOJ background checks that she had already done 3 times in the past for previous certifications. In the end, we probably lost out on 3 or 4 months of her salary due simply to California’s inability to find it’s ass with both hands, a flash light and CCOL.
The Obama administration is more aggressively pressing states to make it easier for military spouses to transfer their professional licenses and certifications from one state to another, officials said.
The issue must be addressed by each state, and the goal is to have all states take action by 2014, said Brad Cooper, executive director of the White House’s Joining Forces initiative.
Military families move much more often than the average family does, and because it’s the government ordering them to move, it’s really the least they can do but help smooth out some of the red tape involved in the move. No one is saying the requirements for military spouses should be less – just that the administrative process be streamlined so they don’t lose out on months of salary waiting for a license they already have.
That said, it’s rediculous that in 2014 this is still an issue for anyone transferring from one State to another – in particular where the test required for certification in a profession is a national one, there’s no reason why States should not already have agreements in place to make it simple to re-license in a new State.