New Veteran Unemployment Rises to 10.9% in AugustCONTACT: Michelle McCarthy (212) 982-9699 or firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 7th, 2012
CONTACT: Michelle McCarthy, (212) 982-9699 or email@example.com
New Veteran Unemployment Rises to 10.9% in August
Jobs Report Highlights Systemic Challenges and Need for Continued Urgency
NEW YORK, NY – Today, as the Labor Department reported that the new veteran unemployment rate climbed two percentage points to 10.9 percent in August, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), the nation’s first and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, called for increased focus by the public and private sectors on job creation for new veterans and military spouses.
“Hundreds of thousands of young veterans are still unemployed--and underemployed. Amid all the rhetoric this campaign season, it may be hard for most Americans to gauge the full scope of the jobs crisis for veterans in our community, but we see the effects on our members and their families on a daily basis,” said IAVA Founder and CEO Paul Rieckhoff. “There has been some progress on the issue, but the August jobs report is a reminder that we have a long way to go.”
“As one million veterans transition home over the next five years, we need less talk and more solutions. As a country, we need to aggressively address the systemic factors contributing to consistently high veteran unemployment. In Washington, The VOW to Hire Heroes Act must be effectively implemented and USERRA must be better enforced to protect servicemembers’ jobs. Congress must pass the Veterans Jobs Corps and legislate to protect the Post-9/11 GI Bill from predatory for-profit schools. There is also a need for more comprehensive research to supplement the inadequate monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics sample. Outside of Washington, from Wall Street to the Motor City to Silicon Valley, more private companies must commit to hiring veterans. The message is clear: if you want to support the troops, hire them when they come home. The nation has invested billions of dollars in training and educating our armed forces and we can’t let it go to waste. Hiring veterans is the right thing to do for our country and our economy.”
IAVA’s work has helped hundreds of veterans get back to work and find unemployment support after their service. Innovative employment programs with companies ranging from jcpenney to McKinsey to PIMCO are making a significant impact and establishing a model for replication. For more recommendations on how to tackle veteran unemployment across the public and private sectors, read IAVA’s Policy Agenda here.
Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) is the nation’s first and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving the lives of our newest veterans and their families. Through innovative health, education, employment and community programs, IAVA strives to build an empowered generation of veterans who provide sustainable leadership for our country and their local communities. Learn more, get involved and join the over 200,000 Member Veterans and Civilian Supporters now at www.IAVA.org.
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