April 22, 2010
Today, Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09) introduced legislation to aggressively address the soaring unemployment rates within our veteran’s community. The Veterans Employment Assistance Act of 2010 includes a series of proposals that will expand training and education opportunities, enhance the ability to transition technical military skills to the civilian workforce, and improve small business assistance programs for veterans.
“Our veterans have risked their lives to protect our country and our freedom and they deserve quality, well paying jobs when they return home,” said Congressman Smith. “While this seems like common sense, often times our veterans struggle to find work when they return home. The Veterans Employment Assistance Act takes a comprehensive approach to create new opportunities and expand existing support programs for our veterans.”
The Veterans Employment Assistance Act expands job training, placement services and entrepreneurship opportunities for veterans who may otherwise have fallen through the cracks of existing programs.
The Veterans Employment Act:
- Establishes an apprenticeship pilot program that would encourage the employment of veterans on military construction projects.
- Expands the Post-9/11 GI Bill to allow returning veterans to use the benefit for apprenticeship and on-job training programs that will help them acquire the skills they need to find stable, family-wage jobs in their communities.
- Establishes a Veteran Business Center Program within the Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide critical entrepreneurial training and counseling to veterans.
- Creates pilot programs to test ways transitioning servicemembers can build on the technical skills learned in the military and better market those skills in the civilian workforce.
- Establishes a Veterans Conservation Corps Grant Program and a Veterans Energy/Green Jobs Grant Program to connect veterans with the green jobs market.