Work Opportunity tax credits have been available since 1996 for employers to have an incentive to hire individuals who may have a certain disadvantage. In 2007 disabled veterans were added to that list.
Each year thousands of veterans, some disabled, are added to the civilian workforce. This can be a difficult time for some as they feel as though they have proven themselves once before by serving in the armed forces, and are now having to prove themselves again, and not knowing how their experience and knowledge will help them stand out.
The Hiring Our Heroes Act of 2011 was brought about to help those service members who are leaving the military to better prepare them for the civilian workforce. The act has made many changes for those that are either separating or retiring from the service regardless of active duty, guard or reserve, in the hopes that they will be better prepared for civilian life.
There is some information that the tax credits are being successful in employing veterans, but only for those of 40 years of age and older. Illinois unemployment rate for October was 8.8 percent; veterans made up 8.1 percent of that number in 2011.
Veterans throughout the United States who were unemployed in 2011 were 8.3 percent. Although unemployment rates are down, veterans are struggling, and they make up most of our population as a whole.