Senate Passes Core Concepts of Murkowski/Murray “Hiring Heroes Act”

Senator: We Need To Come Together for Those Who Come Through For Us

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today voted in support of an amendment that contained most of the provisions of The Hiring Heroes Act of 2011, to provide much-needed relief to America’s veteran community – currently suffering unemployment rates worse than the national average – and gave the following statement after her vote:

“I am pleased that my Senate colleagues were able to come together for America’s veteran community, who have always come through for us,” said Murkowski.  “But I have to personally say that I’m proud that parts of the bipartisan bill I co-sponsored were part of this process, and part of addressing the fact our men and women in uniform are facing double-digit unemployment.”

In May, Senator Murkowski became the lead Republican co-sponsor of The Hiring Heroes Act of 2011 – the first bill of its kind to require broad job skills training for all service members returning home and comes at a time when more than one in four veterans aged 20-24 are unemployed.  Among the portions of the act that passed today are provisions that:

  • Allow veterans to participate in a formal Transition Assistance Program for discharging members of the Armed Forces.
  • Allow veterans organizations to receive grants to help discharged members of the Armed Forces in seeking private sector employment.
  • Require the Defense, Labor and Veterans Affairs Departments to study the equivalence of skills gained in the military with those needed in the civilian world.
  • Provide Members of the Armed Forces awaiting discharge a leg up in applying for federal civil service positions.