This Memorial Day, as we pay tribute to all the brave heroes we have lost fighting for our country, we must also remember the debt we owe to those veterans who return home.
One of the greatest challenges our returning vets face is finding employment here at home. While too many Americans are struggling in this economy, it’s particularly difficult for our young vets. Currently, more than 12% of our veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan are unemployed.
This is unacceptable. The skills our veterans possess are unique and their work ethic is unparralleled but translating that service to a resume for civilian employers continues to be a challenge. That’s why I was proud that Congress came together last year to pass the bipartisan VOW To Hire Heroes Act. This law will give our vets the tools and resources to help them market their incredible skills to employers so they can land a job, support their family and pursue their career goals.
But there’s still more we need to do.
First, we must improve and streamline the Transition Assistance Program (TAP), which provides job training and education to our returning vets in addition to hands on assistance with resume-writing and interview skills.
Under the VOW to Hire Heroes Act, we made TAP mandatory for all active servicemembers. It’s an incredibly effective resource but to improve its effectiveness, we need to expand and streamline it by passing the TAP Modernization Act so we can give our vets and their families the chance at success they deserve.