Veterans were given pins and a certificate honoring their military service. Photo by Chris Stone

Mayor Todd Gloria announced Monday the formation of the Military, Veteran and Families Advisory Council, which will meet quarterly and advise the mayor on ways to actively support the local military, veterans and their families.

“Our military service members and veterans, along with their families, are intrinsic to the fabric of San Diego — it’s a huge part of who we are as a city and region,” Gloria said. “We have a responsibility to ensure our city continues to cultivate a supportive environment to help those who have served as well those who have supported them.”

As its first formal action, the council plans to review the city’s policies and procedures and propose ideas for the city to connect with and mobilize San Diego’s veteran, active-duty military and caregiver communities.

“San Diego owes a debt of gratitude to our residents who have served in the military and their families,” Council President Pro Tem Stephen Whitburn said. “They have contributed greatly to our city. Like Mayor Gloria, I want their input on how we can make San Diego an even better place to live.”

The group of 15 is comprised of eight women and seven men with representation from each branch of the armed forces, as well as representatives including a transitioning active-duty-to-veteran-status representative, veteran small business owner, military spouse and a veteran and military family caregiver.

“The California Department of Veterans Affairs administers programs and benefits to the state’s approximately 1.6 million veterans,” CalVet Secretary Dr. Vito Imbasciani said. “Local leadership plays a vital role when we welcome our veterans’ home and helps to make California the greatest state in the nation for our veterans to live and work.”

–City News Service

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