This week:

As a Basic Needs Allowance is considered in Congress to combat food insecurity, advocates break down what it could mean for the military’s neediest families.

About the Guest:

Josh Protas is the vice president of public policy and heads the Washington, D.C., office for MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger. In this role, he coordinates and implements MAZON’s advocacy agenda, including efforts to protect and strengthen the federal nutrition safety net, with a special focus on the overlooked food security needs in Indian Country and Puerto Rico and for veterans and military families. Protas is co-author with Abby J. Leibman of MAZON’s groundbreaking 2021 report, “Hungry in the Military,” and has extensive experience working at Jewish communal agencies in Arizona and at the national level. Protas lives in Takoma Park, Maryland, with his wife, Abby, and their three children.

Crystal Lewis is a published author and communication expert with experience in multiple fields. She has worked in higher education institutions for over 15 years in teaching and advising roles as well as curriculum design. She has 10 years of experience as a grant and proposal writer for various initiatives, including housing for the mentally-ill homeless population, work programs for the disabled, youth educational programming, and the fight to end America’s opioid epidemic. Lewis is an active-duty Navy spouse with two children and has a doctorate in education.

Eileen Huck became deputy director in the government relations department of the National Military Family Association in October 2012 after previously holding positions in the youth initiatives and development departments. In her current role, Huck monitors issues relevant to the quality of life of families of the uniformed services. Her primary area of focus is health care, to include the Military Health System, TRICARE, and behavioral health care. In this capacity, she serves as the co-chair of The Military Coalition’s (TMC) Health Care Committee and as the Association’s representative on the TRICARE for Kids Coalition. Huck currently resides in Alexandria, Virginia with her husband, a retired Navy captain, and their two children.

About the Podcast:

The Spouse Angle is a podcast breaking down the news for military spouses and their families. Each episode features subject-matter experts and military guests who dive into current events from a military perspective — everything from new policy changes to research on family lifestyle challenges. The podcast is hosted by Natalie Gross, a freelance journalist and former Military Times reporter who grew up in a military family.

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