Understanding Unemployment: February’s Report

By The Numbers

Isn’t winter the worst? At least here on the East Coast, it’s cold, it’s dark, it’s windy, and it’s snowy. After a week and a half of snow storms, wind storms, bitter cold, and cloudy days, we could use some good news today.

This month’s Unemployment Situation report showed the unemployment rate for all Americans remained the same at 4.1 percent for the fifth month in a row.

However, some sunny news for our cold winter-weary bones: veteran unemployment fell to 3.5 percent. The post-9/11 veteran unemployment rate also fell to 3.3 percent this month; which is tied with December 2017 for the lowest unemployment rate we’ve seen for the post-9/11 veteran generation! Male post-9/11 veteran unemployment is three percent this month, while the unemployment for women post-9/11 veterans spiked to 5.3 percent. This is up almost three percent from last month, but as we have explored in other months, it doesn’t paint the whole picture.

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IAVA Unveils The Big 6
This week was our annual Storm The Hill. IAVA members from across the country descended on Washington D.C. to discuss the issues that matter most to you. We unveiled our priorities for the year: suicide prevention, women veterans, defending the GI Bill, VA reform, burn pits, and access to medical marijuana. Our Chief Policy Officer, Melissa Bryant, delivered a powerful testimony in front of a joint session of the House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committee. We shared our stories, our data, and our ideas with lawmakers, Administration officials, and thought leaders in the space.

You might be thinking, what does this have to do with employment? Well, a lot. We know that veteran employment is a top issue for our members; it has been for years. And we understand that part of employment means being healthy enough to go to work, having access to health care providers outside of work hours, and having the education and certifications to get those jobs. That’s where the Big 6 come in; we’ll be spending our year ensuring education benefits are protected and can be used effectively — so that the post-9/11 generation can get the jobs that they deserve. We’ll be fighting for VA reform, mental health care, burn pit and cannabis reforms and research, so that the post-9/11 generation stays part of a healthy workforce.

But we can’t do it without you. Stay up to date with IAVA on Twitter and Facebook. Take a look at what IAVA did this week during Storm the Hill here. And watch Melissa’s powerful testimony here (at 1:02:10).


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