Special Leave Accrual (SLA)
Special Leave Accrual (SLA) allows Service members serving in hostile fire / imminent danger (HF/IDP) areas for a continuous period of at least 120 days to accumulate and retain up to 120 days of leave (60 days of ordinary leave, plus 60 days of SLA-protected leave). The intent of SLA is to provide relief to Service members not allowed leave during lengthy deployments or during periods of hostility.
The return home from combat can often leave servicemembers feeling out of place with the most important people in their lives - their families.
"In deployment, Soldiers grow accustomed to a new lifestyle and a new 'family' - those buddies that bond together to defend each other," said Maj. Ken Williams, 14th Military Police Brigade chaplain. "This lifestyle change is prolonged and becomes familiar, i.e., the new normal."
The families also change while the Soldier is deployed.
"The family is a system," Williams said. "When one family member is absent, the whole system changes. All members of the family adapt to a new 'normal' way of life."
When the servicemember returns, the family may feel uncomfortable with each other, and the servicemember may withdraw from the family.