The majority of middle-class families, both civilian and military, are opposed to the proposed scaling back of military retirement benefits by the Department of Defense, according to the First Command Financial Behaviors Index released Monday.
The index shows 68 percent of middle-class civilian families, defined as those making at least $50,000, are opposed to military pension cutbacks. Sixty-five percent of middle-class military families, senior NCOs and commissioned officers making $50,000 or more, who know about the proposed changes are opposed to them.
The survey included 200 military families and 330 civilian families.
“Our recent monthly surveys of military families have revealed heightened worries over retirement benefits, but this latest finding shows that their concern is shared by the general population,” says Scott Spiker, CEO of First Command Financial Services Inc. “This solid opposition from both service members and civilians tells us that Americans in general think that making cuts to military retirement benefits is the wrong way to reduce military spending as part of sequestration and defense downsizing.”
The proposed changes to military retirement benefits have not altered the career plans of most middle-class service members, according to the index. Eighty-eight percent say they plan to serve to full retirement.