JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md. –
In 2019, Congress approved additional funding to assist military families living in base housing who were experiencing health hazards such as infestations, mold or asbestos exposure.
Due to numerous health concern reports, the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act was passed, establishing additional requirements for the resident advocate position across the Department of Defense.
Sandy Williams, 316th Wing privatized housing resident advocate, is the base resident advocate whose job is to assist service members and their families in finding solutions to their housing issues.
“I am here for you,” said Williams. “It does not matter how small the problem is. If it’s a question you have, it’s obviously something that has not been answered or something you have not been willing to accept.”
The Privatized Housing Resident Advocate acts as a liaison between housing residents, the Military Housing Office, Liberty Park at Andrews, and the installation commander for issues regarding resident rights and advocacy.
The RA is the key advisor to the installation commander and wing leadership on housing issues related to safety, health and security in privatized housing. The RA is responsible for critical advocacy services on behalf of military members and their families living in privatized housing.
“Come to me,” said Williams. “I am willing to do the legwork for you to find more information, even if it’s just clarity. I am here to speak for you.”
Williams assists residents who are unable to resolve their housing problems, concerns or needs through the project owner and the Military Housing Office.
She assists military members and their families to better understand their lease, resident guide, resident responsibilities and explanation of the Tenant Bill of Rights.
Williams has provided assistance and information regarding exceptions to policy, works to promote a better line of communication with privatized housing leadership, and encourages transparency to build more trust within the base housing community.
She is currently working to create a Resident Council to improve quality of life for service members while living in family housing. This council will be the voice for residents, communicating directly with the installation commander.
“If you want something to be elevated that you feel you have been wronged or something needs to change, come speak with me,” Williams said. “What is affecting you may be affecting other families as well, and my goal is to help educate, provide clarification and assist you through the resolution process.”