Overcome Unemployment for Military Veterans
Blog, Veteran Employment

How to Overcome Unemployment for Military Veterans in Australia with Veteran Employment Services?

Overcome Unemployment for Military Veterans

In 2011, the unemployment rate for young military veterans aged 18 to 24 reached 29 per cent. Younger veterans were 3.4 percentage points more likely to be unemployed between 2000 and 2011. The unemployment gap between veterans and non-veterans narrows dramatically with age and time after military separation. According to the report, limiting Veteran unemployment benefits could lower the length of unemployed spells, but the long-term impact is unknown. There is relatively little information on the success of other federal measures targeted at veteran employment services for the civilian market.

The short-term increase in unemployment reported in recent statistics on freshly separated veterans from the military speaks only of job searching. While recently discharged veterans may have an injury that hinders their capacity to work, research does not support this as a root cause of higher unemployment. Some employers may discriminate against veterans because they are all severely affected by mental illness. While this is a problem, it does not fully explain the whole issue. Other reasons include a gap in education or training. However, this can be easily remedied through recognition of prior learning services (RPL) or upskilling to obtain relevant qualifications. There is still much research to be conducted on the issue. However, there are a few critical areas for support that would help to improve these statistics:

Proposed Solutions for Consideration:

  • Social involvement — research demonstrates that having social connections/peer support improves outcomes.
  • Assistance coordination – a broad role in care coordination and support – starts with the fundamentals of housing and medical care.
  • PHAMs/PIR recovery models, for example, strongly emphasise peer assistance.
  • Partnerships, retraining, peer assistance, and dedicated employers and industries are part of the employment journey.

The significant features of early intervention best practise are incorporated within the paradigm, including:

  • Once the discharge has been scheduled, contact and service will be commenced as soon as feasible.
  • Care coordinators who are military family members with expertise in allied health can offer a broad perspective.
  • With assistance tailored to the individual’s requirements, flexibility like rank/training constraints must be removed.
  • Life Counselling is provided by skilled and competent personnel, with concern for peers and complimentary services.
  • A holistic approach is used to ensure that social and family supports are in place.
  • An emphasis on what can be done rather than what can’t
  • Including work-directed tactics that track the individual’s progress at a speed that is reasonable for them.
  • Evaluation to determine the program’s success
  • Robust data gathering and analysis points aid veterans’ involvement, performance, and ecosystem use.

What role do education and career prospects have in addressing veteran unemployment?

Root Causes for Veteran Unemployment

Three significant causes primarily influence unemployment among veterans. These are some of the reasons:

  • Translating military employment expertise into civilian terms is a difficult task.
  • Obstacles to certification, such as licencing requirements
  • Mental and physical health issues, i.e. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Even though 81 per cent of military positions had a near-civilian counterpart, many veterans did not transfer their military expertise into everyday terminology. In the civilian sector, someone who runs video teleconferencing would be the military occupational specialisation Visual Information Equipment Operator-Maintainer. Those resumes are incomprehensible to employers. However, because they have many civilian resumes to pick from, they tend to stick with what they know. Veterans might improve their chances of finding work by putting in the extra effort to adapt their military CV to civilian terms.

  • Many veterans looking for work are frustrated by the difficulty of obtaining suitable qualifications. While specific technical disciplines, such as “signals communication,” may not immediately transfer to Silicon Valley computer code, many military vocations are nearly equivalent to civilian employment. When a veteran pursues the civilian counterpart of past military occupation, he or she is confronted with daunting, perplexing, time-consuming, or expensive requirements such as certification or study. 
  • Suppose a veteran wants to transfer his or her driving skills to a civilian truck driving job. In that case, he or she must obtain commercial driver certifications after driving a million-dollar armoured Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle for 12 hours per day on Afghanistan’s mountainous and mine-filled roads. While various programmes have been established to help transfer military talents to civilian professions, many veterans have been discouraged because they are unaware that such employment services exist for veterans.
  • Unemployment has far-reaching consequences beyond a loss of money and the threat of poverty. A veteran’s health might worsen, as well as his or her financial and emotional well-being, especially if he or she is unemployed for a lengthy period. Depression and suicide are two of veteran unemployment’s most common health consequences.
  • Many vocations, especially military occupations, offer a great sense of purpose, pride, accomplishment, attention, and responsibility. After leaving the service, many veterans hunger for community and connection. The workplace might be stressful, but there is no substitute for what employment gives in terms of structure, support, and significance, especially for the mentally vulnerable.
  • The anxiety and stress in searching for a job can often lead to depression, especially when people have been unemployed for six months or longer. A study revealed that being unemployed is associated with a two to threefold increased relative risk of death by suicide compared to being employed.

Australian veterans fought through emotionally, physically, and spiritually trying situations for months and years. They went home with the hope of a new beginning, new chances, and a chance to put the past behind them. Unfortunately, many of these veteran employment services struggled with the adjustment, and many fell into the trap of long-term unemployment.

Community Involvement Solutions (CIS) is a registered charity providing veteran employment services which offer relief from poverty, economic disadvantage, and mental and emotional anguish via education and training. We assist individuals to improve their position by implementing holistic programmes that achieve significant change in collaboration with Veteran and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

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