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Veteran Unemployment Crisis

Is there a veteran unemployment crisis?

If you believe that veteran unemployment is on the rise, think again. According to a recent Huffington Post article, veteran unemployment, at 7.0 percent, is actually lower than the nation’s 7.5 percent. So why are reputable news agencies reporting such an inflated number?

The New York Times, for example, wrote on Jan. 5 that "...the unemployment rate for veterans was 10.8 percent." The same day, Today.com reported a "...10.8 percent [unemployment] for veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars..."

A few days later, the Fiscal Times stated, "...the current 10.8% unemployment rate for veterans (according to the Department of Veterans Affairs) is higher than the already worrisome national average of 7.9%.” However, all three sources are incorrect. As the Huffington Post pointed out, 10.8 percent is the unemployment rate for only Gulf War II Era veterans– or post-9/11 veterans– about half of whom have not deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan.

So, as Mark Thompson, writing for TIME's Battleland Blog, explained, 10.8 percent is the statistic for unemployed post-9/11 veterans alone. While on the other hand, the national average for veteran unemployment is actually 0.5 percent lower the national civilian average of 7.5 percent.

In December 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated a population of 2.5 million post-9/11 veterans with an 82.5% workforce participation rate.

The Huffington Post went on to explain that while it is true that this group faces higher unemployment, there are other factors besides their military experience that contribute to their unemployment. For example, post-9/11 veterans are generally younger, a group with typically lower employment. Also, veterans as a whole tend to be more highly educated than civilians, but they pursue higher education later in life. Post-9/11 vets in their 20s and 30s tend to have less education than their peers, and less educated population segments usually have lower employment rates. So on the whole, post-9/11 veteran unemployment figures are not altogether significantly different than the civilian population.

“The most important thing we can do is accurately report the facts,” The Huffington Post wrote. “The message to employers should be: ‘In the long run, veterans have a high rate of employment, because they are good workers and companies want to hire them.’”

Donate your automobile to Volunteers of America of Greater Ohio

You can help veterans find employment by supporting Volunteers of America’s programs and services when you donate your car, truck, motorcycle, boat or RV. We offer job-readiness and training programs to our veterans to help them find and maintain meaningful employment. It is through long-term employment that they are able to regain self-sufficiency as well as self-esteem. Our services include job-readiness skill development, resume writing, job searching, placement and coaching, career clothing, transportation assistance and referrals to community resources.

By donating your car to Volunteers of America, you are ensuring that these indispensable programs grow and our clients continue to prosper. Donating your automobile is easy. Start by filling outour online form or calling (800) 225-0732. You could even receive more money for your automobile as a charitable donation than you would by selling it on the market. We’ll take nearly anything with a motor, even if it hasn’t run in years. We also offer same-day car towing at no cost. When you donate your car or truck to Volunteers of America, you are directly helping veterans and families here in your community.

As the Huffington Post wrote, “Veterans aren't asking for sympathy or charity. They are asking our workforce– and the media– to be more in tune to the facts, and to understand the assets that veterans bring with them from their military service.”