WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-05), ranking member of the House Veterans Affairs Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs Committee, and Congressman Ted Poe (TX-02) introduced the Job TOOLS for Veterans Act, bipartisan legislation to expand access to job training resources for veterans of all eras and their spouses, this afternoon.
Under the Job TOOLS for Veterans Act, veterans of all eras would become eligible for the Department of Labor’s Transition Assistance Program (TAP), an initiative established to help current service members transition into civilian life with job search information and training information. Prior to the establishment of TAP, few service members received any job training assistance during their transition at all. The Job TOOLS for Veterans Act would establish 50 centers across the country to expand access to job resources and ensure the Department of Labor provides classes with job-training information.
“The men and women who have admirably served our great nation must know we stand behind them when transitioning from military to civilian life,” said Congressman Poe. “The Transition Assistance Program (TAP) ensures their needs are met. TAP allows veterans and their spouses to seek guidance for career training, pursue higher education and provide the necessary resources to access Veterans Affairs benefits. Unfortunately, due to the current size and scope of TAP, many veterans still receive little to no training upon their transition to civilian life. The Job Tools for Veterans Act will allow veterans from any era access to TAP, and it expand the program to at least 50 locations across the United States. The expansion of these programs will give our veterans the support they deserve.”
“Access to job training is essential to our mission of ensuring our service members land on their feet when they return home from protecting our freedom,” Esty said. “Our bipartisan bill would expand to make veterans of all eras able to participate in the TAP program, a key veterans’ job training program with a proven track record of results, as on average, those who participated in the Department of Labor’s TAP program found their first job close to a month sooner than those who didn’t. Our bill would allow all veterans, no matter when they served, to get access to job training. I’m grateful for Congressman Poe’s support and dedication on this issue.”
Veterans in Connecticut applauded the bipartisan effort. “I have been home for seven years now. I know I would’ve appreciated having the support and information provided to current separating service members to assist me in planning for the next chapter of my life after the Marine Corps,” said Gulaid Ismail, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and small business owner living in Meriden. “It is great to offer it now to veterans at any stage of their civilian employment journey. They earned it.”
Esty’s legislation has earned the support of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).