First Lady talking to Fort Benning families with special needs children

Published: Oct. 14, 2022 at 4:30 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - The final day of a visit for Jill Biden happening today on Fort Benning. The First Lady getting the chance to talk to military spouses who have children with special needs.

First Lady Biden says everything she heard today from military members and their spouses is important information. She’ll take back to her husband in Washington to get military families the support they need.

First Lady Jill Biden stopped by Fort Benning today. It’s in connection to an initiative first introduced by Michelle Obama back in 2011 called ‘Joining Forces’. It’s designed to help get military members, caregivers, and survivors the support they need.

“This is not a red issue or a blue issue, this is really fighting for our kids and what’s best for them,” she said.

First Lady Biden says Friday’s roundtable discussion is not a party issue, but a an issue to bring awareness to what’s needed for the exceptional family member program -- aiding military families who have children with special needs.

“I’ve traveled as second lady and a first lady across this country and heard about the many challenges and this one keeps coming up over and over again,” said Biden.

Nicole Hilmes’ husband served in the military for 27 years and her son is enrolled in the exceptional family member program diagnosed with autism.

Hilmes shared with the First Lady her struggles of getting him the proper care he needs at a low cost saying, “It brought most of us to tears, because some time what we do is thankless, you’re a parent that’s what you’re supposed to do you are supposed to provide for your child, and you know no matter what obstacles for your kids, and to have your First Lady care is amazing.”

The next step is to take those concerns directly to The White House.

“This is one of the things I’ll talk about. ‘Hey Joe, this is what military families need help with, and our ‘Joining Forces’ will be helping with this and this is how you can lend a hand,” said First Lady Biden.

The First Lady has visited over a dozen military bases to continue to promote the ‘Joining Forces’ initiative.