Job fairs are being held in 13 sites across Tennessee Thursday specifically targeting veterans. The job prospects for service members have vastly improved since the first such hiring events last year.
The unemployment rate for veterans of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has now dropped below 8-percent. Last year, the jobless rate for the country’s youngest veterans was closer to 10 percent.
More companies have agreed to bring vets on their payroll. Tennessee Labor Department spokesman Jeff Hentschel says the number of employers participating in the hiring fairs have swelled by 40 percent.
“And it’s specifically for Tennessee veterans, and every employer is required to have available jobs – not self employment, not resume gathering – none of that business – just real jobs.”
Some state agencies are involved. So are Tennessee’s largest private employers – including Vanderbilt, Nissan and HCA. A federal law allows tax breaks of up to $14,000 per new hire if the veteran was previously drawing unemployment benefits.
Outside of Nashville, veteran job fairs are being held in Clarksville, Columbia, Cookeville and Tullahoma. Here’s a link for times and locations.