A Salute to Veterans
On November 10 in Washington, DC, the Department of Labor hosted a Salute to Veterans ceremony in anticipation of Veterans Day. The event began with opening remarks from Mike Michaud, Assistant Secretary for the Department of Labor’s Veterans Employment and Training Service (DOL VETS), including a pair of video messages from Congressmen. Then, a panel of distinguished speakers shared their personal experiences, successes, and efforts as leaders, veterans, and supporters of veterans. Here’s a quick digest of what the panelists and speakers discussed:
- Celebration of the 5th-year anniversary of the VOW Act, which offers many forms of support to veterans, including: transition assistance, education and training opportunities, incentives for employers of veterans, and more
- Thanking veterans and reminding us of the importance of supporting our veterans when they return to civilian life
- Working tirelessly to reduce the unemployment rate for veterans: Making the Transition Assistance Program (TAP) mandatory; getting veterans in front of employers; getting employers to better understand the resumes of veterans, and to better understand how to support and develop veterans after hiring them; and collaborating with employers from both the public and private sector to create opportunities for (and better understanding about) veterans.
- What can we do better? Resolve unemployment issues for long-term unemployed veterans, and do more to get veterans employed immediately. Sustain the momentum gained in recent years in improving the unemployment rate (which is now below the national average)—the problem of veterans’ unemployment has not been solved, and it requires a sustainable long-term effort and strengthening of partnerships with employers and programs.
As President Obama once put it, Veterans Day is not about how we treat Veterans on this day each year, but about how we treat them every day of the year, and how we can serve them as well as they have served America.
There are many ways to support veterans, and Management Concepts honors and remembers all veterans for their service. Saluting and saying thanks is a good start, but if you’d like to learn more and do more, check out the following resources—programs from the DOL, DOL VETS, and Dept. of Veterans Affairs—for other opportunities to engage and support America’s military service veterans and veterans’ organizations:
- Volunteer with the HVRP—the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program, funded by the DOL.
- Share the DOL VETS resources for Women Veterans.
- As an employer, connect with the Transition Assistance Program (TAP) to find opportunities to employ veterans or to find resumes.
- Volunteer your time and skills with VAVS – the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Voluntary Service program.
- Connect with the Small Business Administration’s Boots to Business program for supporting veterans with entrepreneurial aspirations. Boots to Business offers information, training, tools, and more for transitioning service members.
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