Defense Caucus Supports Bases - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Defense Caucus Supports Bases

Defense Caucus Supports Bases

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The unemployment rate for America's veterans stands at ten percent and that's unacceptable.

That's what a group called the Senate Defense Communities Caucus said today.

The group of US Senators formed to champion issues of importance to military bases and members of the military.

The 17-member caucus held its first event in Washington DC today.

The caucus was brought together by North Dakota Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat, and Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson, a Republican.

Heitkamp says the military has begun offering more help through more extensive counseling given to veterans.

And she hopes the caucus can spur action in towns and cities across North Dakota and the nation to help military veterans find work when they come home.

(Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, -D- ND) "I think it is critically important that we pursue full employment for the returning veterans, that we do everything we can to say thank you and that includes using those skills. But it also is important in North Dakota that we use those skills to build our workforce and our capacity and so many of these vets have skills that we desperately need. They're heavy equipment operators, electricians, they have medical training, I could just go on and on." 

Heitkamp says finding jobs and supporting the needs of veterans are especially important now considering there will be an estimated one million veterans released from the military over the next few years.

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