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There is absolutely no other group of individuals in this nation who should be honored as much as those who toil for us around the world, and in many instances, sacrifice their very lives.  Our military forces and their families are forced to live through great times of difficulty in order to carry out the various requirements deemed essential by the Commander in Chief of our country. 

In this time of war around the world, many of our military forces are on their fifth or sixth tours of duty overseas on very dangerous fields of battle.  The sacrifices that our military families endure are enormous.  These very special individuals must suffer long periods of separation, unspeakable danger, and, in most cases, inadequate pay.  Today they are experiencing another hardship upon their return from overseas duty – the lack of employment.

Upon their return, many military members have been finding a higher-than-average unemployment rate and a tough time transferring their military skills to the private sector of American business.  And as more military veterans look for employment jobs after returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the job market still doesn’t offer much hope.  There is a positive side to all this since the military itself offers separating military access to programs that can help them transition into the civilian work force. But a slow job market and an overabundance of military talent trying to find jobs are over tasking these programs.

Those Reservists and National Guard members due have federal law on their side.   Upon return from military service, The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) is designed to help Veterans regain the positions they were forced to leave in order to serve the nation’s military force. But sadly, with the downsizing of America’s business community, many vets are returning to find the company they left is now out of business and the job they once had no longer exists. 

Employers have differing attitudes about hiring military veterans. Some businesses see veterans as the ideal candidate because of their proven leadership skills.  But others are unenthusiastic to hire returning military members; concerned that former military may be too inflexible or that they might bring unwanted baggage with them, including mental or physical problems.  I urge businesspeople across the country to seriously consider rewarding our returning military troops with honor, reverence, and jobs.  You will never find better employees – people who are dedicated, responsible, drug-free, educated, and reliable.  Hire the military and respect them every day for their selfless service to this nation.

I am writing this from personal experience because I was once a member of our country’s gallant force of the U.S. Armed Forces.  I know first-hand the rigors that they and their precious families must live through in order to endure a military lifestyle for our sake.  Now that I am no longer on active duty, I still feel an commitment to continue to serve this nation by helping these exceptional people in any way I can.  I hope you will too.

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