Congressman Kim, Community Leaders Discuss Solutions for Veteran and Military Family Employment at Roundtable

August 1, 2019
Press Release

Congressman Kim, Community Leaders Discuss Solutions for
Veteran and Military Family Employment at Roundtable

WASHINGTON, DCCongressman Andy Kim (NJ-03) was joined by local veteran leaders and advocates at a roundtable discussion yesterday to find solutions to reduce the military spouse unemployment rate and provide veterans with resources they need to find good paying jobs

“Our goal here isn’t just to talk about problems, but to find solutions that can help veterans and military families now,” said Congressman Kim. “It’s hard enough these days for people in our community to afford to pay the high costs of owning a home and raising a family. We owe it to those who served and their families that they never have to worry about that because they have a path to a good-paying job.”

Congressman Kim was joined by Assemblyman Ronald Dancer (R, LD-12), and staff from Legislative District 10, Senator Cory Booker’s office, the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the New Jersey Department of Labor. In addition, veteran and military leaders from the VFW, American Legion, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst and other organizations participated.

“The Veterans of Foreign Wars is proud to have the opportunity to contribute to Congressman Kim’s military spouse and veteran employment roundtable,” said Barbara Kim-Hagemann, Commander of the Department of New Jersey VFW. “It is important that the stakeholders present had an opportunity to express to the Congressman the obstacles our military service members and their spouses face in the job market and during transition from military to civilian life. The need for long term transitional assistance programs is vital to improve the quality of life for America’s veterans, their families and our communities. We look forward to working with the Congressman and his team on these issues and achieving our common goal in serving our nation’s veterans.”

Making it easier for veterans and military families to find work and afford to live comfortably is a top priority for Congressman Kim. Earlier this year, he introduced H.R. 3191, the bipartisan Spouse Employment Reciprocity and Vocational Instruction for Career Enhancement (SERVICE) Act, which would address the active duty military spouse unemployment rate, which stands at 24 percent, more than six times the current national unemployment rate. Significant elements of the bill were included and passed through the National Defense Authorization Act.

“Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, like most U.S. military installations, has several employment-support programs designed to assist military spouses and to prepare service members for life after service,” said Shawn Jones, chief of legislative affairs at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst. “The roundtable provided us an excellent forum to discuss these programs while hearing from other organizations that also strive to address the unique dynamics of veteran and military spouse employment.”

In addition, Congressman Kim introduced H.R. 3661, the bipartisan Patriotic Employer Protection Act, which would strengthen programs intended to protect small business owners whose employees are military Reservists deployed on active duty. The bill has been endorsed by the American Legion.

Congressman Kim is a member of the House Armed Services Committee, where he serves the Vice Chair of the Subcommittee on Readiness and as a Member of the Subcommittee on Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities.