In a previous post, we shared with you statistics that indicated an increase in the unemployment rate of young veterans. This was further affirmed during a hearing last Thursday before the House Veterans Affairs subcommittee on economic opportunity, during which retired Navy Reserve Capt. Marshall Hanson commented: “Civilian employers are increasingly not hiring those in service.”
According to an article on the Navy Times, employers are concerned about post-traumatic stress disorder, the possibility of deployment for military reservists, and ignorance on how military skills can be translated into the civilian workplace.
Experts are now urging the military to use the same recruitment machinery that is being employed to encourage enlistment to market the skills of veterans to prospective employers. Aside from working with the private sector, however, the government should also do its part by hiring veterans.
Timothy Embree of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America shares: “Remove those employed by VA and DoD and there aren’t a whole lot of veterans working in the government.” However, Bureau of Labor Statistics Phil Rones pointed out that the unemployment rate for veterans is not that different from those of non-veterans.
Justin Brown, a legislative associate with Veterans of Foreign Wars, insists, though, that “one unemployed veteran is too many.”
Congressional aides have reportedly shared that employment for veterans will be a hot topic for Congress towards the fall elections. A comprehensive jobs bill for veterans that aims to improve the transition from military to civilian life, among other things, is being worked on by Sen. Patty Murray.