Senate Passes Bill to Help Veterans Find Post-Military Employment
Wednesday the Alaska State Senate passed a bill that will help veterans transition back into civilian life and into the workforce. Senate Bill 150 will now head to the house for more consideration.
The goal is to help the veterans quickly obtain the skills necessary to get back into the civilian work force, using the skills and training they learned in the military.
SB 150 will direct state boards to accept the various training military men and women have received as some or all of the qualifications needed to receive a license or certificate.
“Many of our veterans have the skills, talent, training, and experience to contribute to our workforce the day they put on civilian clothes,” said Senator Bill Wielechowski in a press release February 1. “They need a transition process that recognizes the value of their military experience in civilian terms and, when relevant, helps them get the right certification for their next job.”
Wielechowski sponsored the bill.
UAA is being directed to accept military experience as credit toward a degree or technical program.
According to Wielechowski, during the recruiting process men and women are promised that their service in the military will give them a head-start toward a college degree and a more promising career.
“But many of the thousands of veterans who attend college after tours of duty are denied credit for military courses and specialized skills despite an accreditation system set up [for] it.”
As of June 2011, one million veterans found themselves unemployed, according to the Department of Defense.
In the last year, Alaska welcomed 1,286 retired or separated veterans who now call the Last Frontier home.
Currently Representative Bill Thomas has a similar piece of legislation in the house.
"These veterans fought to make a better future for us," said Wielechowski. "Now it's time for us to fight for a better future for them."