It is our veterans’ skills and real life experience that we need to help rebuild America. Removing a few of the obstacles that stand in the way of their success and connecting them with the employment opportunities that they deserve is the least we can do to thank them for their service.
Transportation is a sector that relies heavily on veterans’ experience and training as a result of their military service. We are proud to assist veterans find work in strengthening America’s transportation system.
Why was yesterday special for me? Because I am proud to announce that 500 American railroad companies will hire 5,000 veterans in 2012.
Freight, inter-city passenger, and commuter railroads, as well as rail supply companies represented by AAR, and I thank them for their commitment to America’s heroes.
Many rail manufacturers and operators have employed veterans for decades because of their expertise in military service. In fact, 25 percent of the industry’s current workforce has military service.
The First Lady and Dr. Biden’s Joining Forces initiative continues to recognize, honor, and support veterans and military families throughout their lives as part of AAR and its members’ renewed commitment yesterday.
Since Joining Forces launched last year, more than 1,600 companies have employed more than 90,000 veterans and military spouses. And these same companies will employ more than 170,000 veterans and military spouses in the future.
We believe that being a veteran employer is a win for everyone involved. And we want to continue putting the men and women who have served this nation to work in our rail yards, in our skies, and throughout our transit systems.
We launched Veterans Transportation Career Center last month with our Veterans Affairs friends. The portal provides transportation jobs for veterans and helps transportation companies find qualified veterans.
$29 million has been issued through our Veterans Transportation and Community Living Initiative for 64 projects in 33 states in And just last week, we announced the second round of grants. These funds will enhance the accessibility to transportation services that our veterans, military families, and wounded warriors greatly need to connect with jobs, education, medical services, and other opportunities in their communities.
The skills and real-life experience of our veterans are what we need to rebuild America. Removing a few of the barriers that stand in the way of their success and connecting them with the jobs they want are the least we can do to thank them for their service.
AAR is making substantial progress in that endeavor, and having its job offer is a terrific step in the right direction.