Veterans are some of the most important segments of the USA’s population, bearing in mind that they sacrificed their lives and time to serve the nation in the past. Bearing in mind the commitment that they show in their line of duty, it follows that the government should not ignore their welfare after retirement. However, there has been evident reluctance in regard to the manner in which the government handles the veterans, especially when it comes to employment.
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In this regard, the people who join services after their secondary school level find it difficult to compete favorably for job opportunities with their peers. Understandably, most of these vets, who join the military and other fields of specialization after high school, have deficient and untranslatable skills. In addition, they use a lot of time serving the federal government such that they have little time to make business networks and relations.
As a result, they cannot start businesses and develop them successfully without facing significant difficulties that impede their proficiency. The incapability to develop businesses successfully is also occasioned by the lack of concrete managerial knowledge that is crucial in the process of stipulating and actualizing financial strategies. In an attempt to the case of unemployment and other issues related to the veterans, the federal government conceived the veteran administration that was mandated to oversee their welfare. However, it has been established that the overall rate of veteran unemployment is essentially above the civilian’s one. This shows that employment is available, but the terms of engagement favor ordinary citizens more than the vets. In essence, this poses a question of whether employment is equitable and sustainable between vets and the rest of the citizens.
Importance of the Research
The conception of veteran administration was a crucial undertaking as far as employment and the general welfare of the subjects are concerned. However, the alarming level of unemployment evokes the need to research the effectiveness of this institution in light of fulfilling its most crucial mandates. Particularly, the role of reducing and eliminating the level of unemployment among veterans should be evaluated in order to determine whether the goal has been achieved satisfactorily. The research will thus provide a reliable basis for improving the existing strategies and introduce new ones in the quest to eradicate the unemployment menace. In addition, it will form the basis of establishing the importance of this institution as far as the unemployment of veterans is concerned.
There have been various research studies that have been conducted in light of determining the plight of the subjects in relation to unemployment caused by the incapability of the veteran administration to curb the menace. In light of unmasking this condition, some of the data released by the various institutions at different periods will be reviewed.
High Unemployment Rates
In 2013, research was conducted to determine the rates of unemployment among the post 9/11 attack veterans, other veterans, and the national level of employment. In this research, data were collected for each month throughout the month so as to monitor the monthly valuations and obtain the average rate. When the results were obtained, they indicated that the 9/11 attack veterans experienced high levels of unemployment when compared with all veterans and the national average (Haerens, 2011).
In the month of January 2013, the country registered the highest rate of employment for the post-9/11 attack, whereby a rate of 11.7 percent was registered. Indeed, this was superseded the rate of all veterans by 4.1 percent and the national average by 3.8. In addition, the monthly rates of August, September, and October were substantially high since they rated at 10, 10.1, and 10, respectively. When compared with their respective national average, they had a difference of 2.7, 2.9, and 2.7, respectively. This implies that the level of unemployment of post-9/11 veterans, which was one of the most crucial events in the history of the USA, were essentially higher than the national average.
This shows that the veterans occasioned by this unfortunate eventuality in 2001 have remained unemployed for the last 12 years. Additionally, the rate of unemployment for post-9/11 veterans is essentially unstable. For example, the rate falls from 9.4 to 7.7 in the months of June and July. In August, the rate shoots from 7.7 to 10.0 percent, which is even higher than the rate registered in June. In another instance, it is clear that, in December, the rate fell from 9.9 to 7.3 percent, which is close to the one recorded in June. Evidently, it is clear that there is a great variance between the rates for post-9/11 veterans and the rest of the two population segments. Whereas this variance could be attributed to the small sample size used for data collection, it is evident that for the last 12 years, these veterans have not obtained permanent and reliable employment (Holyfield, 2011).
This conclusion is based on the fact that the rate keeps of fluctuation after every month, indicating that some veterans lose their jobs after every month while others obtain them. Bearing in mind that the veterans’ administration has been operating since 1930, it is essentially unexpected that the rates of unemployment are high and inconsistent. In essence, the varying rates indicate a lack of progress when it comes to eliminating unemployment among veterans.
Understandably, women are more vulnerable to undergo physical and mental affliction than men when they are accomplishing their federal roles. As a result, they become a critical concern to the effectiveness of Veteran Administration. A research conducted by the Labor Department sought to establish the unemployment status for women veterans in different ages. It compared the rates of unemployment between the veteran and non-veteran women. After the research, the following results were obtained, as shown in diagram 2.
From the diagram, it is observed that the rate of unemployment among veteran women was essentially higher than the one for non-veterans. At the age of 18-24, the veteran rate of unemployment was at 18 percent, while then one of the non-veterans was at 14 percent. In addition, 18 and 14 percent were the highest rates of unemployment recorder for veterans and non-veterans, respectively. This shows that the veterans are disadvantaged when compared with their counterparts, owing to some of the reasons exemplified previously. Some of these aspects include a lack of translatable skills and a lack of networks to help them acquire jobs after serving the government (Miller, 2012).
Whereas the Veterans Administration has been mandated to protect the welfare of veterans, which could be accomplished by providing employment opportunities easily, women are still suffering from critical problems that impede their development. This implies that the VA is useless to the women veterans, given that they have not been capable of solving critical issues that affect them. Indeed, this institution has failed to take care of the critical components of the veterans’ population. As a result, its relevance and mandate are essentially invalidated based on the premise that it has failed in the process of discharging its roles.
Difficulties in Joining Veteran Administration
Whereas it seems easy to join the VA administration, previous research has established that the process of applying for an admission is tedious and involving for the veterans. Furthermore, the veterans do not get the opportunity to join the VA automatically; instead, they have to undergo this evaluation in order to obtain membership. As a result, some of the applications are rejected, and affected victims do not enjoy the employment benefits from the administration. However, it cannot be disputed that the services granted to the nation by veterans are of equal importance. None of the veterans is better than the other when it comes to the consideration of their challenges and commitment to the country (Pieslak, 2009).
It thus follows that the tedious application process acts as a tool of denying membership rather than a significant element of ensuring veterans’ welfare. In fact, it is sarcastic that the veterans should be subjected to such involving processes, while some of them suffer from critical disabilities such as traumatic brain injuries and psychological counseling. This is based on the premise that disabled veterans find it difficult to manage the application process persistently, thus losing their chance. As a result, there is a possibility that potential veterans can be rendered a non-member because they were unable to manage the process, despite being meeting the requirements of membership.
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Presently, it is established that the VA has a backlog of about 1.2 million applications that have not been reviewed or rejected. When the applications are rejected, the veterans are required to undergo another complex process of appeal for a reconsideration of their membership status. This complex undertaking complicates the process further so that most of the potential members are not accepted to enjoy benefits under the Veteran Administration. As a result of these difficulties, most veterans refrain from applying for membership and wait for the family members to take care of them or seek employment in the private sector individually. This being the case, VA loses its relevance to the veterans based on the premise that it is not friendly to the applicant who comprises of statesmen who served the country with dedication. Most of them become financially disabled, homeless, and depressed due to a lack of basic needs.
In fact, one of the researches by the Labor Department shows that heroic military achievers become mentally handicapped and end up in the streets due to sustained traumatic injuries, alcohol and PTSD complications (Whisenhunt,
2011). If such veterans had an opportunity to join the VA easily, they could obtain employment and lead a normal life rather than suffering in the streets. In addition, the unemployed veterans have been conflicting with the criminal justice system due to their anti-social behavior and engagement in offenses while attempting to make a living.
- H1: The Veteran Administration is useless to the veterans.
- H0: The Veteran Administration is not useless to the veterans.
Haerens, M. (2011). Veterans. Detroit: Greenhaven Press/Gale Cengage Learning.
Holyfield, L. (2011). Veterans’ journeys home: life after Afghanistan and Iraq. Boulder, CO: Paradigm Publishers.
Miller, T. W. (2012). The Praeger handbook of veterans’ health: history, challenges, issues, and developments. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Praeger.
Pieslak, J. R. (2009). Sound targets American soldiers and music in the Iraq war. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
Whisenhunt, D. W. (2011). Veterans of future wars: a study in student activism. Lanham, Md. [u.a.: Lexington Books.