Edmonds Military Wire: Are jobs really a concern for our military families?
A Department of Labor report stated that in 2011, the average unemployment rate among returning veterans was 12.1 percent – essentially that works out to over one in 10 of our transitioning veterans were unable to secure a job. Those numbers have declined a bit since the study, but the simple fact is: Unemployment and underemployment are still looming issues for today’s veterans and their families.
But how big of an issue is this really? MOAA and Syracuse University Institute for Veteran and Military Families have partnered on a survey to find out.
Just in case you don’t know who these two organizations are, MOAA is the nation’s largest and most influential association of military officers. It is an independent, nonprofit, politically nonpartisan organization based out of Washington, D.C. Syracuse University Institute for Veteran and Military Families (IVMF) is the first institute of its kind in the nation that leverages the intellectual, programmatic and human capital resources of higher education in support of the post-service life of the nation’s veterans and military families. JP Morgan Chase & Co. is one of its founding partners.
This imperative study will look at the employment pattern of all military spouses, especially related to a spouse’s long-term career trajectory. The survey is open to all active duty, retiree, veteran, and surviving military spouses.
By adding YOUR voice, these two organizations can build a stronger foundation for military spouses’ professional needs, identify any barriers to career development and share YOUR stories with government officials, state, and federal policy makers in order to overcome obstacles and improve the quality of life for our service members and families.
Here’s your chance to be heard. Your voice does matter and can influence change.
Bottom line: Over the next few years our military will experience increased force reductions which means our transitioning families will be entering into a job market where more than 53 percent of our 2012 graduates are either unemployed or underemployed. Competition will be tough – so be heard when the opportunity presents itself. This study is a place to start.
- By Michael Schindler
Michael Schindler, Navy veteran, and president of Edmonds-based Operation Military Family, is a guest writer for several national publications, author of the book “Operation Military Family” and “The Military Wire” blog. He is also a popular keynote and workshop speaker who reaches thousands of service members and their families every year through workshops and seminars that include “How to Battle-Ready Your Relationship” or “What Your Mother-in-Law Didn’t Tell You.” He received the 2010 Outstanding Patriotic Service Award from the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs.