Militaryoneclick Reports U.S. Companies Plan to Hire 435,000 Vets and Spouses over Next Five Years

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MilitaryOneClick participated in a press conference today where the First Lady announced another new company that has taken the pledge to hire military veterans and spouses.

Joining Forces
1 million service members will leave the military over the next several years, adding to the hundreds of thousands of veterans already looking for work.

Blackstone, one of the world’s leading investment and advisory firms, announced today that it plans to hire 50,000 veterans over the next five years across its portfolio of 80 companies, which include Sea World and several hotels.

The hiring initiative is part of Joining Forces, spearheaded by First Lady Michelle Obama and Jill Biden to encourage U.S. companies to employ 435,000 veterans and military spouses in private sector jobs.

During a press announcement today, the office of the first lady reported that an estimated one million service members will leave the military over the next several years, adding to the hundreds of thousands of veterans already looking for work.

Blackstone co-founder and CEO, Steve Schwarzman said today that veterans are adaptable, collaborative, reliable and motivated and he said with proper training and mentoring, some of them could build life-sustaining careers within his companies. Such careers might range from hotel management positions to paramedics work, Schwarzman said.

Other U.S. companies that have partnered with Joining Forces include Home Depot, the United Parcels Service and Walmart, which plans to hire 100,000 veterans in the next five years.

Wal-Mart CEO Bill Simon said his company will offer a job to any honorably discharged veteran within one year of the end of their military service.

“We’re thrilled to have them join us,” Simon said.

Wal-Mart also has challenged 50 of the country’s largest employers to follow suit. Simon said 43 of those companies attended a meeting last month to discuss how their companies could reach out to veterans and also create a pool of applicants that could be shared between those companies to help veterans find the right jobs for their skill sets.

Chuck Milam, acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for military community and family policy also highlighted job-placement programs that help both veterans and their spouses, including Hiring Our Heroes, a partnership between U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Capital One that aims to hire 500,000 veterans and military spouses by the end of 2014.

The post- 9/11 veterans unemployment rate has also fallen 2.2% since Joining Forces began in 2011, but there are still about 200,000 veterans in this group looking for work.

Simon highlighted the need to give back to veterans who have committed so much of their lives to our country’s safety especially during overseas operations.

“I believe it’s our obligation to offer them a land of opportunity and prosperity when they come back,” Simon said.

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Jennifer Pilcher

Jennifer Pilcher
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