Blunt introduces bipartisan bill to encourage veteran-friendly hiring, retention practices

Employers who hire and retain veterans would be recognized and awarded as part of a new system established within the Labor Department under bipartisan legislation recently introduced by U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO).

The Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing (HIRE) Veterans Act would recognize employers based on what percentage of new hires and overall workforce are veterans, what types of job training and leadership programs are available to veterans, and what benefits and additional resources are offered.

“America’s service members and veterans have the knowledge, skills and leadership training that provide a tremendous asset to private-sector employers,” Blunt, a member of the Congressional Veterans Jobs Caucus, said. “I’ve been encouraged to see employers in Missouri and across the nation working to expand opportunities for our military men and women as they transition to the civilian workforce.”

Employers who meet pre-defined benchmarks would be recognized with a Medallion Certificate awarded at gold and platinum levels.

“My hope is that this bill will help connect more veterans with the businesses that offer benefits and opportunities geared toward veterans’ hiring and career development, and give these businesses the recognition they deserve,” Blunt said. “I urge all of my colleagues to support this measure so we can take another step toward fulfilling our commitments to those who have served.”

U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), who introduced the bill with Blunt, said American businesses have joined the effort to hire veterans in recent years.

“This is tremendous news, but while many employers claim to be veteran-friendly, there is no nationally recognized standard for employers to aspire to, or for future veteran employees to seek out,” Manchin said. “This bill will change that, and it is one more step we can take toward making it easier for our service men and women to find opportunities for good-paying jobs.”

The bipartisan Congressional Veterans Jobs Caucus was formed five years ago and has made strides in reducing the veterans’ unemployment rate, Manchin added.