Military Connection: September Unemployment Stats: By Debbie Gregory

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has released “The Employment Situation” for September, 2014. The monthly report details the current statistics of employment, and tracks current trends.

Military Connection studies the trends of employment and unemployment among military Veterans. Many employers, recruiters and staffing organizations utilize statistics found in the BLS data. Anyone interested in information concerning our nation’s employment should give the report a good read through.

September’s Employment Situation shows that for the second month in a row, employment statistics improved for all demographics of Americans. Veterans from nearly all age groups have lowered their unemployment rates by at least one point from September, 2013.

For September, 2014, Veterans saw a 4.7% unemployment rate. This number is down from 5.6% in August, and a significant drop from the 6.5% rate in September of 2013. The overall Veteran unemployment rate bested the rate for non-Veterans, which tallied in at 5.7%.

In the report, Iraq and Afghanistan era Veterans are referred to as “Gulf War-era II Veterans.” This generation of Veterans saw an unemployment rate of 6.2% for September, 2014. This number is down from 8.1% in August, and from the whopping 10.1% that it was at for September of last year.

But the Gulf War II era Veterans’ unemployment rate continues to be the demographic with the highest unemployment rate in the country, by half a point. Female Gulf War II Veterans saw their unemployment jump back up to 10% after months of steady improvement.

The unemployment levels among Gulf War II era Veterans fluctuates considerably, sometimes dropping and rising two points from month to month. The fact that a number of these Veterans are utilizing the Post-9/11 GI Bill could be impacting the data. The benefit is designed to sustain Veterans while they go back to school, so many of these Veterans don’t seek employment. There is also the question of whether the Veterans consider themselves employed on surveys while they are being paid to  attend college. Either way, there have been noticeable variations in Gulf War II employment stats, specifically in months that semesters are starting and ending.

Looking at the data that the BLS report provides, it is clear that Gulf War II era Veterans are still having difficulties on the job front. It is hard to believe that a generation of men and women who served in the world’s greatest military during a time of war would have any trouble getting hired. The best way that we, as a nation, can help this generation of volunteer warriors is to stand up for them as individuals in our own companies and our own communities. Make sure your HR professionals know that Veterans need our help. See if considerations can be made to fill open positions with the men and women who were deemed fit and capable of training for the hardest job anyone can perform, going to war.

Employers are encouraged to utilize conduits that link their openings to Veterans. The MilitaryConnection.com job board is an excellent tool that brings employers and Veterans together, and hopefully see an even lower unemployment rate next month.

Military Connection proudly serves those who serve in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve, Veterans and their Families. We are the go to site for Veteran Employment and information on Veteran education. Militaryconnection.com provides Veterans with and Directory of Employers, a Job Board, information on the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and a blog that offers Veterans boundless information. Be sure to visit Militaryconnection.com, the go to site.

Military Connection: Sept. Unemployment Rate Stats: By Debbie Gregory