Joining Forces Blog
- Posted byon July 25, 2012 at 6:16 PM EDT
Earlier today, I was pleased to join the National Association of Social Workers at their national practice conference to announce a new Joining Forces commitment that will help train more than 650,000 social workers to have a better understanding of issues affecting our troops, veterans and military families.
We have asked a lot of our military since Sept. 11, 2001. They – and their families – have responded to the need for more frequent and longer deployments. As they have done in the past, our troops and their families have answered the call with no complaint.
But they shoulder a tremendous burden. As one Marine wife and mother recently told me, “people have no idea what 10 years of war will do to a family. All my kids have ever known is war.”
- Posted byon July 25, 2012 at 10:20 AM EDT
Life just got a little easier for the tens of thousands of military spouses who work in a profession that requires a state license, including nurses, physical therapists, real estate agents, dental hygienists and so many more. Military spouses move from state to state often as they accompany their service member on assignment to military bases around the country and therefore need to transfer their license from state to state.
Yesterday in North Carolina, the Governor signed legislation marking North Carolina as the 26th state with measures in place to support military spouses transfer their licenses portability. This new legislation in North Carolina follows similar measures passed in Hawaii and South Carolina that support military spouse license portability in just the last few weeks.
The issue of military spouse license portability is not new – as an Army brat, I can remember friends of my parents going through the pain of transferring their licenses back in the 70’s and 80’s. And then in the 90’s and onward, I watched as my own friends went through the same challenge of license transfer when they moved to a new state. The process can often take months and can be a huge disincentive to work.
But no one in America has been able to move this issue for decades until the First Lady and Dr. Biden made military spouse license portability a signature issue of their Joining Forces initiative.
Back in February, the First Lady and Dr. Biden asked governors to pass legislation to reduce the financial and administrative strains that military spouses incur from trying to get their state licenses or certification credentials to transfer from state to state. At the time, only 11 states had legislation on the books.
We’ve still got work to do, but with 26 states now having laws supporting America’s military spouses, we’re well on our way to meeting the 2014 goal!
Learn more about Joining Forces work to make it easier for military spouses to transfer licenses:
- Posted byon July 24, 2012 at 5:17 PM EDT
Ed. Note: This article was first published on SBA.gov
Today, more than 250,000 service members are transitioning each year from the military to civilian life. These men and women are proven leaders and they have the skills and experience needed to be outstanding business leaders. Veterans over-index in entrepreneurship. One in seven veterans are self-employed or small business owners, and about one quarter of veterans say they are interested in starting or buying their own business.
That’s why all across the Administration we are focused on making sure that these brave individuals have the tools and resources they need to succeed.
In his speech to the VFW in Reno, President Obama highlighted the valor and the sacrifice of our nation’s military. And the important role that we have as a nation in making sure that these men and women are able to seamlessly transition back into their communities.
- Posted byon July 16, 2012 at 4:30 PM EDT
Last week in Missouri, I met with several Missouri National Guard members, their families, and faith leaders about the critical support they are providing our troops and families – both during deployments and after our service men and women return home.
As a military mom, I know firsthand what a difference the support of a church or community can have on a military family. When my son Beau was deployed to Iraq, our church put a notice in the church bulletin – a simple act of kindness that meant so much to our family.
That’s why what is happening in Missouri is so important. The Partners in Care initiative is a national partnership program linking caring faith communities to Guard members and their families who need certain resources. Through the partnership, faith-based organizations provide a wide range of free services to Guard families – from child care, to transportation, to counseling.
- Posted byon July 12, 2012 at 11:08 AM EDT
On Tuesday, the Vice President and Dr. Jill Biden visited the Las Vegas branch of the non-profit United States Veterans Initiative (U.S. Vets). With a mission to help homeless and at-risk veterans find jobs, U.S. Vets provides comprehensive support that includes housing, counseling, and career development programs. The Las Vegas group alone works with more than 160 veterans every day.
At the organization’s career center, the Vice President and Dr. Biden joined a life skills workshop, where they met with veterans who are either currently working or searching for work.
- Posted byon July 11, 2012 at 5:03 PM EDT
Ed note: This post was originally published on FastLane, the official blog of the U.S. Department of Transportation
I’ve written before about how veterans have the right skills and training for successful careers in transportation as a result of their service. And at DOT, helping our veterans find work strengthening America’s transportation system is a commitment we are proud to fulfill.
That’s why yesterday, I was proud to join Association of American Railroads (AAR) President and CEO Ed Hamberger and Joining Forces Executive Director Brad Cooper to announce that 500 companies and organizations from America's railroad industry will hire more than 5,000 veterans in 2012.
Participants in this outstanding initiative include freight, inter-city passenger, and commuter railroads, as well as rail supply companies represented by AAR, and I thank them for of their commitment to America's heroes.
Hiring experienced military men and women into the railroad industry is not a new practice. For nearly two centuries, rail manufacturers and operators have recognized that our veterans bring a wealth of skills that translate from military service to successful railroad careers. In fact, 25 percent of the industry’s current workforce has military service.
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